North Dorset butterfly sightings needed

Map of Dorset showing butterfly sightings
White Holes map of north Dorset

North Dorset still has areas where no butterflies have been reported for five years – could you help fill the gaps?The white squares on the map are those with no butterfly sightings. The red squares have been well covered and the pink ones have had some butterflies reported, but not many. To see the interactive version of the map, go to our White Holes page. Once there, you can hone in on a specific area, and clicking on a square will show its grid reference. The ‘map’ view shows roads, though faintly, so turning on the ‘satellite’ view may help, though for footpaths you need to turn to an Ordnance Survey map.

It is only by knowing how each butterfly species is faring that we can start to work out how to help them. Even common species are important: Pearl-bordered Fritillaries were once so common in Dorset they barely bothered to note them, but they are now considered extinct in the county.

Black butterlfy with striking red and white markings

Red Admiral. Photo: Shona Refoy

Red Admirals are around at the moment, as are most of the rest of the common Vanessids, with Painted Ladies being found all over the place. There are also lots of Whites on the wing, plus Common Blues and some Meadow Browns, though they seem to be fading; Speckled Woods can be found on the edges of areas with trees.  We’ve got some good weather forecast, so you should still be able to find some species to record.

Send in your sightings via our Butterfly Recording page.

Please take care, especially if you are surveying roadside verges, and do not trespass.

Thank you very much for your help.


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