The success of Butterfly Conservation’s habitat management and restoration relies on the data gathered from our recording and monitoring schemes. These world renowned schemes also alert Government and other organisations to species and habitats requiring urgent action.
Did you know? Butterflies are officially recognised by the Government as an indicator species. This means trends in our data are used to inform policy decisions that will protect all UK wildlife.
Can you help fund the future of our butterflies and moths?
Please donate today and help us use science to continue improving the health of our environment to protect and save our precious wildlife before it’s too late!
Our latest recording and monitoring data shows that over 70% of butterflies are declining and a similar number of common moths are struggling too.
If we don’t continue to monitor trends of threatened species it could lead to more losses in years to come – we must avoid this happening. We need to raise over £200,000 to fund vital ongoing and new research programmes during the next two years.
Why recording and monitoring is so important…
Statistics show that the High Brown Fritillary is our most endangered species. We have targeted conservation effort on Dartmoor, Exmoor and the Morecambe Bay Limestones. Large areas of new habitat have been restored and the butterfly is showing signs of recovery.
Our State of Larger Moths report revealed that over 70 widespread moths were in severe decline (over 70% in 35 years). They have since been added as Priorities in the Governments list of threatened species for research to find our why.
The huge dataset on butterflies and moths is a rich source of information for scientists in the UK and around the world. Our data has been used in over 100 scientific papers during the last 20 years looking at factors such as climate change, impact of changing land use and habitat fragmentation.
Monitoring climate change
Butterflies and moths are very sensitive to small changes in the environment. Our records show that the Orange-tip and 14 other butterflies have expanded rapidly in the last few decades, a clear sign of climate change.
Over 125,000 people have contributed to the Big Butterfly Count and over 15,000 people regularly submit records to our butterfly and moth recording schemes. Together they have contributed over 28 million records making Lepidoptera one of the best documented wildlife groups.
Information from our recording schemes enables conservation organisations to target conservation effort at priority species where they need the most help. Our landscape scale projects have already been successful in reversing the decline of several highly threatened species.
The UK Butterfly Monitoring Scheme has highlighted the decline of woodland butterflies and loss of open habitats in woodland. The Forestry Commission have now introduced grants to help reverse these declines and are managing key woods on advice from Butterfly Conservation.
We need you to help us make the right call about where to direct our conservation effort. Please donate today so we can use science to save butterflies and moths for the future.