Small Tortoiseshell Oxted Trevor Sears

While this is an uncertain and anxious time for everyone, I want to update you on how the Coronavirus Covid-19 is likely to affect our work and assure you that we are adapting and rising to the challenge of continuing our fight for nature.

At Butterfly Conservation we are taking the health and safety of our staff and volunteers very seriously and, in line with government advice, all our staff and volunteers have been instructed to work from home.

For many people this is not a difficult thing to do as our email, phone and online communication capabilities allow us to have a more mobile workforce than ever before. For some though this will be challenging, particularly for our scientists and dedicated volunteers whose on the ground conservation and community outreach work is critical to what we do. We know, unfortunately, that their important work will become more difficult to carry out.

Like all charities and organisations around the world, we don’t yet know what the long-term effect will be on our ability to research, educate and fundraise, but we will continue to adapt and innovate as much as we can during this difficult time.

We are also in the opportune position to be able to share with our supporters and the public, a little ray of positivity and hope as Spring arrives in our back gardens and public spaces. We will be encouraging people who may be isolated in their homes or feeling overwhelmed by the news agenda to take some time out in their own gardens if they can. At present and in line with the very strong and clear message of the UK govt asking people to stay at home we urge everyone to adhere to the request from the government and to please stay in your homes and enjoy the wildlife in your own gardens if possible. 

Please do not travel to spot or record butterflies and moths during this quarantine period. You can do so much good simply by recording them in your own garden! We’ve already received lots of exciting sightings of butterfly and moth species (such as Brimstone, Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell and Red Admiral as well as the Ruby Tiger moth and Purple Thorn) which are newly on the wing and we want to encourage people to get spotting in their own gardens (if they can) as more species emerge.

There’s such an important link between mental wellness and being outside in nature. Here’s a few activity ideas if you’re isolated at home:

Take a break in nature and spend some time outdoors butterfly spotting.

  • You can identify the species you spot using our online ID pages.
  • We’d love you to share your sightings on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. We will be sharing interesting facts, updates and images under the hashtag #feelbetterwithbutterflies.
  • You can also submit your sightings online via iRecord Butterflies.
Brimstone (mating pair) - Rob Blanken

Speaking of sightings, have you submitted all your butterfly and moth records? Why not get out your old notebooks and check if all those records from previous years are safely lodged with your county recorder? You can submit even your old butterfly records online or using mobile apps.                                                 

Plant some wildflower seeds for our summer pollinators. Seeds are easy to buy online, or perhaps there’s a few left over in your shed from last year.

Build an Insect A&E. We are encouraging people to help build special areas to support butterflies and bumblebees with the help of Channel 5’s Dr Amir Khan. This is a brilliant activity to do as a family too, if you have children and are looking for ways to engage them. Find out more and enter a competition to win some garden plants.

As a valued supporter, I want to assure you that we are doing everything we can to continue to fight for the conservation of our butterflies and moths. Thank you for your support.

Please look after yourselves and my warmest wishes to all.

Julie Williams
Chief Executive


All Butterfly Conservation events are cancelled until further notice. 

We are doing everything we can to provide support and reassurance to our staff, volunteers and supporters in these uncertain and challenging times. We wish to play our part in keeping people healthy and safe.

Following government guidance, we have decided all of our events involving staff and registered volunteers scheduled must be cancelled. This includes both indoor and outdoor activities.

We will review arrangements for future months in due course in light of any updates to government guidance and share updates on our website and social media channels and by email to those registered with us. 

These are exceptional times and we’ll work to support each other and keep you updated.