Expanding the Large Blue Landscape in the Polden Hills
To increase the area of suitable habitat for the Large Blue butterfly in the Polden Hills
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19/09/2011 13:54: Butterfly Conservation has received a £119,989 funding boost from SITA Trust for their project ‘Expanding the Large Blue Landscape in the Polden Hills’.Butterfly Conservation has received a £119,989 funding boost from SITA Trust for their project ‘Expanding the Large Blue Landscape in the Polden Hills’.
The globally endangered Large Blue butterfly became extinct in Britain in 1979. Since then this iconic insect has been successfully reintroduced to Britain in one of the most successful invertebrate conservation projects in the world. The Polden Hills of Somerset support nearly 80% of British Large Blue populations and the aim of the project is to consolidate this network of colonies through a programme of landscape scale habitat restoration on 15 different sites. The increase in area of suitable limestone grassland habitat by over 60 hectares will not only strengthen existing Large Blue populations but encourage new populations to recolonise unoccupied sites.
Sam Ellis of Butterfly Conservation said ‘This project is crucial to the future of the Large Blue in Britain and Europe. We hope to see the Large Blue expand its current range in the Polden Hills and colonise sites where the butterfly was last seen in the 1840s’.
Jools Granville of SITA Trust said ‘We are extremely pleased to be able to support such a fantastic project. Butterfly Conservation has an impressive track record gained over many years - indeed they have lead on a number of SITA Trust-funded projects and been involved in dozens more. We know from experience the amazing biodiversity outcomes that can result from direct funding in this area and look forward to seeing the benefit for all sorts of species in the Polden Hills’.