Last Friday, the Boundary Way Project team took to the allotment on the hunt for butterflies to help take part in the Big Butterfly Count! Big Butterfly Count is a UK-wide survey aimed at helping the charity Butterfly Conservation to assess the health of our environment simply by counting the amount and type of butterflies (and some day-flying moths) we see. It was so easy and fun to do, especially with all the lovely butterflies we have at the allotment, so today we thought we’d encourage you to get involved!
There are only three steps to taking part in the Big Butterfly Count:
- Get Ready – Download the free big butterfly count app on your phone here or download the spotter’s guide to see which butterflies you need to look for and to help you identify them!
- Join In – Now you’re ready to start counting butterflies. This week is the last week to get counting, with the survey ending on 9th August 2020. You can count anywhere outdoors, just pick a spot and spend 15 minutes spotting the butterflies. You could do it in your garden, the local park or wildlife haven, or why not on your allotment plot!
- Add Your Counts – Now it is time to make sure your counts are a part of the nationwide survey. You can either enter your data on the Big Butterfly Count website here, or if you have been using your app you can do it on there! You will contribute to a huge interactive map of conservation science and research, you’ll also be able to se if anyone nearby has also been counting!
Butterflies are wonderful creatures, brightening up our gardens with their beauty, but they are also hugely important as part of our ecosystem and environment. They pollinate, are vital components of the food chain and have been around for at least 50 million years as part of our nature!
Butterfly Conservation explain that one of the reasons that butterflies are so important is that ‘Butterfly declines are (…) an early warning for other wildlife losses. Butterflies are key biodiversity indicators for scientists as they react very quickly to changes in their environment. Therefore, if their numbers are falling, then nature is in trouble. So tracking numbers of butterflies is crucial in the fight to conserve our natural world’. Taking part in the survey will help Butterfly Conservation learn ‘how to protect butterflies from extinction, as well as understanding the effect of climate change on wildlife.’
It is so important to protect the nature that we love, especially after it has been such a sanctuary for us in recent times. The Big Butterfly Count is a great way to give back to our natural environment and a great fun activity for all ages too! Find out more on the Big Butterfly Count website here.