Category Archives: Conservation

Back From the Brink and the Barberry Moth

Barberry Carpet Moth
Barberry Carpet Moth. Photo: Ian Hughes

The Barberry Carpet Moth suffered from the eradication of its food plant, Common Barberry, due to it being host to the wheat rust fungus. There are now rust-resistant wheat varieties, but almost too late for the moth. There are thought to be just ten populations of this moth left in the UK, mostly in Wiltshire, but also in Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Dorset.

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Work on Lankham Butterfly Reserve

A group of people in a field, with the dip of a pit in front of them; two are holding cutting equipment and there is a bonfire
Work party at Lankham chalkpit

A team of BC and EuCAN volunteers are working alongside contractors with powertools to clear the former chalkpit on the north side of the Butterfly Conservation Butterfly Reserve at Lankham Bottom. Continue reading

Working together to protect the Silver-studded Blue

Silver-studded Blue (male). Photo: Matt Berry
Silver-studded Blue (male). Photo: Matt Berry

Butterfly Conservation’s Conservation Officer, Rachel Jones, has revealed how working alongside the Dorset Wildlife Trust on the beautiful Isle of Portland has helped to protect the Silver-studded Blue butterfly. Continue reading

Giant Hill Ecology Project

Five men with hacksaws at the foot of a hill, with a bonfire
Working on the Cerne Giant Hill. Photo: Malcolm Wemyss

The Giant Hill Ecology Project takes place on the hill with the Cerne Giant. We just hope they are careful with their rakes and loppers or they could do him some painful damage!  Malcolm Wemyss has reported on the latest conservation work undertaken. Continue reading

Big Butterfly Hike: Update

Celebrations with friends and colleagues

A huge congratulations to Butterfly Conservation’s Dr Martin Warren who has completed his Big Butterfly Hike, walking over 105 miles to save 3 threatened species: the Wood White, Duke of Burgundy and the High Brown Fritillary. Continue reading

Big Butterfly Hike

Martin's Hike
Sponsor Martin’s Hike!

Starting on Monday 27 July and ending on Sunday 2 August, the CEO of Butterfly Conservation, Dr Martin Warren, will be undertaking the challenge of walking the length of the Jurassic Coast, to save butterflies. Continue reading

The Large Blue – a conservation success

Large Blue. Photo: John Woodruff

The Large Blue is aptly named, being indeed the largest and also rarest of the ‘blue’ butterflies in Britain but sadly, absent from Dorset. It is easily distinguished from other blues by the row of black spots on its upper forewing, the underside consisting of a pale brown colour dotted with a further array of black markings. Continue reading

New record for Weymouth Relief Road

Dingy Skippers have been recorded for the first time on the wildflower banks lining the bridle path of the Weymouth Relief Road. This was an exciting discovery for the guided walk on 17 May. Common Blue was seen in abundance and at least 3 separate colonies of Small Blue.

Dingy skipper on kidney vetch

Dingy skipper on kidney vetch. Photo: Allan Neilson

The branch has been monitoring this site since its creation in 2011. The cutting is now a delight with horseshoe vetch in full bloom creating a carpet of golden yellow. There has been a year-on-year increase of butterfly species seen. Who knows? – maybe the next will be the Chalkhill Blue.

If you would like to help with our survey please just walk the bridle path from the Ridgeway down to the Bincombe turning. We are also recording the banks alongside both of the lay-bys. Please let Georgie Laing know you would like to help so she can send you a recording form, using our Contact Form.

To get to the main walk along the bridleway, park at the truncated end of the Broadmayne road. The bridleway goes along the side of the hill. Map: SY674859