Get involved to help save our butterflies!

A campaign is being launched to help save threatened butterflies.

Central Scotland Forest Trust (CSFT) is encouraging people in Milngavie and Bearsden to play their part in helping to conserve the range of the colourful insects currently found in Scotland.

The ‘Better Homes for Butterflies’ initiative, part funded by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), forms part of the Year of Natural Scotland 2013, which aims to support responsible enjoyment of Scotland’s natural heritage and to explore opportunities for promoting conservation.

There has been a decline in peatland butterfly populations in the Central Scotland Forest area in recent years, which experts partly attribute to a loss of habitat and a reduction in food availability.

Peatland and moorland specialist butterflies, including the large heath, the green hairstreak and the small pearl bordered fritillary depend on the quality and availability of boggy habitats in the ecosystem.

Locals in East Dunbartonshire are being asked to get involved in the campaign by coming along to one of the CSFT events and learning more about the butterflies.

There will also be practical conservation days when people can help restore a piece of peatland in their area, and there are lots of resources, hints and tips about how to create a mini peat-bog in the garden and how else to get involved at www.csft.org.uk

As well as providing high-quality habitats for peatland and moorland butterflies, peat bogs offer additional environmental value in their carbon storage properties, their ability to alleviate flooding and their positive impact on biodiversity.

Emilie Wadsworth, Biodiversity & Heritage Officer at Central Scotland Forest Trust, said: “Following the success of our previous campaigns which focused on bees, bluebells and tree sparrows, we wanted to protect another popular species in the Central Scotland Forest area which is currently facing decline.

“Our ‘Better Homes for Butterflies’ drive offers a range of educational resources for local schools including teaching aids on butterflies and peatlands, as well as suggestions for how to create small bog gardens in the school grounds.”

For further information about the ‘Better Homes for Butterflies’ campaign please visit http://www.csft.org.uk/out-a-about/better-homes-for-butterflies or contact Emilie Wadsworth on 01501 824 791 / emilie.wadsworth@csft.org.uk