Why are our butterflies disappearing?

by Butterfly Conservation in 

Why are our butterflies disappearing?
We did it
On 24th November 2016 we successfully raised £6,810 with 307 supporters in 28 days

Our butterflies are disappearing. Help us identify why so we can protect them before it is too late.

by Butterfly Conservation in

New stretch target

Thank you so much for your support.

We have now passed our original target, but with your help we can achieve even more. The more money we raise the more analysis we can do to identify clear reasons for these declines. This research will underpin our conservation work, so we can safeguard our beautiful butterflies and moths against further losses.

We wouldn't be able to do this work without your generosity. 


The 2016 Big Butterfly Count revealed a worrying collapse of butterfly numbers across the UK.119149-7624d507a2784b93c26129bd52a57ff4.

We need your help to understand these devestating declines before it's too late for our butterflies.

Summer would not be the same without the sight of a Small Tortoiseshell flitting from flower to flower, or a Small Copper basking in the sun, but both these species were surprisingly scarce this year.

What is the problem?

2012 was the worst year on record for butterflies, with the blame put mainly on unseasonably cold and wet weather.  The figures for the 2016 Big Butterfly Count were even lower than this disaster year, in spite of a warmer than average summer. We urgently need to identify clear reasons for these declines in order to prevent further losses of our beautiful butterflies.

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Widespread species such as the Gatekeeper, Comma and Small Copper experienced their worst summers since the Big Butterfly Count began and were down 40%, 46% and 30% respectively compared to last year.

The Small Tortoiseshell saw a 47% drop in numbers and Peacock slumped by 42% with both species recording their second worst years.

These declines could be due to the very mild winter, or the cold spring. Intensive farming and pesticide use are also likely to have an impact. But without further research we cannot accurately determine the causes and prevent further declines.

It is not just bad news for butterflies

Butterflies respond quickly to environmental changes. Their sensitivity makes them valuable indicators of the health of the countryside. Declines of our common butterflies are a clear warning sign that wildlife as a whole is in trouble.

What can I do?

Please donate to our research fund today and your support will help us undertake further analysis of butterfly and moth recording and monitoring data. This research will allow us to identify the root causes of decline and the conservation action that could  improve the outlook for the species that are struggling the most.

Research is vital to help underpin our conservation work and safeguard our beautiful butterflies and moths for future generations to enjoy. Please donate today.

If you would prefer not to receive one of the rewards then let us know by emailing bminers@butterfly-conservation.org

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£10 or more

£10 Reward

We will send you a beautiful butterfly postcard and sign you up to receive our monthly email newsletter

£50 or more

£50 Reward

To receive an exclusive Big Butterfly Count report, showing the Big Butterfly Count results of the past 5 years. We will also sign you up to our monthly email newsletter.

£100 or more

£100 Reward

You will be entered into a draw to attend a one off presentation from Butterfly Conservation's science team at our head office in Dorset. Hear first hand about the challenges we face and receive a copy of the Big Butterfly Count report. We will also sign you up to receive our monthly email newsletter.

£250 or more

£250 Reward

You will be invited to attend a one off presentation from Butterfly Conservation's science team at our head office in Dorset. Hear first hand about the challenges we face and receive a copy of the Big Butterfly Count report. We will also sign you up to receive our monthly email newsletter.


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