Butterflies may be tiny but to save them you have to think big.
Colonies of butterflies surviving in small isolated pockets of land are vulnerable. Research has shown that they can be encouraged to spread their wings and expand but only if they don't have to fly too far.
In response to this new way of understanding butterfly populations and movement, our work to protect them and their habitat takes a landscape-scale approach. Conservation on a landscape-scale means creating chains of butterfly habitat across large areas of countryside.
In the last five years, Butterfly Conservation and our partners have embarked on some of the biggest butterfly projects to date.
- Restoring Marsh Fritillary metapopulations on Dartmoor.
- Conserving the High Brown Fritillary on the Morecambe Bay Limestones.
- Conserving the Marsh Fritillary in Dorset: Lessons from 15 years of landscape-scale-conservation.
- The impact of management on Pearl-bordered Fritillary populations in the Wyre Forest.
- Specialist moths in Breckland: creating bare ground habitat on a landscape-scale.
- The Heath Fritillary in the Blean Woods: A low input large output landscape project.
- Restoring very small fragmented landscapes for the Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary in the Durham Coalfield Pennine Fringe.
- High Brown Fritillary in Vale of Glamorgan: saving the last site in Wales.
- Restoration of a Small Blue metapopulation on the Southam Lias Grasslands of Warwickshire.
- Landscape-scale woodland restoration for multiple species in the South East Woodlands.
- Delivering land management advice for Marsh Fritillary in Scotland.
- Targeting restoration management to stabilize Duke of Burgundy metapopulations on the North York Moors.
Our latest report provides concrete evidence that projects aimed at conserving butterflies and moths at a landscape-scale have enabled threatened species to flourish after decades of decline. A landscape-scale approach works by improving and connecting land for wildlife by the coordinated conservation management of numerous sites for a range of species across a large natural area.
The report, Landscape-scale conservation for butterflies and moths: lessons from the UK, also shows that measures to conserve rare butterflies and moths have helped other threatened species as well as the habitats in which they live.