Caption: Fritillary Butterfly
Butterflies are close to the heart of the Rusland Horizons scheme. Our Wings in the Woods project focuses on surveying, monitoring and improving the habitats of six endangered species of butterflys and moths.
Did you know that butterflies are an excellent indicator of the health of an environment? Declines in butterfly populations are an early warning sign for other wildlife losses. We know that in 2011 a study found that 72% of UK Butterfly species were found to have declined in abundance - surveying the populations are an important way of assessing the overall position and then helping to decide what actions need to be taken.
By taking part in the Big Butterfly Count 2018 you can help contribute to the biggest butterfly survey in the world and help us understand more about the Rusland Horizons area.
So what do I need to do? just spend 15 minutes on a warm, still day somewhere with nectar rich plants - flowers, thistles, brambles. Best time is between 10am and 3pm. Record what you see - using the spotter sheet or the app - both can be found here. If you don't see any butterflies or you see a different species not on the list please do record this - a sighting of no butterflies is a really important information as is the sighting of a different species - could be a rare one on our list! If you do manage a photo why not share it with us on the Rusland Horizons facebook/instagram or twitter?
You can log your sightings here until the 31 August.
Lots more information can be found here https://www.bigbutterflycount.org/