Chequered skippers are back: extinct English butterfly breeds for the first time in over 40 years!

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Last year I wrote about our involvement with the chequered skipper reintroduction project that’s happening in north Northamptonshire, and specifically the work of University of Northampton postgraduate researcher Jamie Wildman.  For the past month we’ve been sitting on some news that we were not allowed reveal: the reintroduction has been a success!  That is to say, adult butterflies emerged in May this year, having overwintered as pupae, and have been seen breeding in Rockingham Forest.  The secrecy was to prevent hordes of butterfly twitchers (buttwitchers?) descending on the site and possibly doing unintentional harm as they searched for the adults.  The population just isn’t large enough to be able to withstand that sort of pressure.

The BBC has run with the story this morning – here’s the link – and we have issued a piece via the university’s press team: the link to that is here.

In a time when the media is dominated by profoundly depressing stories about wildlife and the environment it’s great to be able to end the week with some positive news.  Here’s to the long-term success of this lovely little critter!

 

3 Comments

Filed under Biodiversity, Butterflies, University of Northampton

3 responses to “Chequered skippers are back: extinct English butterfly breeds for the first time in over 40 years!

  1. Murtagh's Meadow

    Great news

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t get out much these days, but my back garden is completely overgrown with bramble and damson suckers. Outside my kitchen windows is a huge mass of beautiful big bramble flowers, that is buzzing with bee life–though they seemed to get off to a late start–, and a great sparrow playground.In ealrier years there were always Gatekeepers fighting above the bushes, and plenty of other butterflies passing through. This year I’ve not seen a single butterfly of any kind. There still seem to be small moths and the odd ichneumon in the evenings, but none of the larger or more colourful moths.It is all rather unsettling.Glad to hear there’s still one species up your way!:/ From: Jeff Ollerton’s Biodiversity BlogSent: Friday, 28 June 2019 08:51To: steve.a.hawkins@ntlworld.comReply To: Jeff Ollerton’s Biodiversity BlogSubject: [New post] Chequered skippers are back: extinct English butterfly breeds for the first time in over 40 years!

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    jeffollerton posted: ”

    Last year I wrote about our involvement with the chequered skipper reintroduction project that’s happening in north Northamptonshire, and specifically the work of University of Northampton postgraduate researcher Jamie Wildman.  For the past month we’ve”

    Liked by 1 person

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