Wildlife

Butterflies are ‘failing to cope’ with climate change – UK

Butterflies are “failing to cope” with climate change and the pollution of the British countryside, experts have warned after a disastrous year saw population declines in 40 out of 57 species.

The UK Butterfly Monitoring Survey found it had been the fourth-worst year overall with six species – the heath fritillary, grizzled skipper, wall, grayling, white-letter hairstreak and white admiral – all suffering their most dramatic declines in the 41 years since records began.

Sixteen species saw increases with one remaining about the same, the annual survey found.

The survey has run since 1976 and involves thousands of volunteers collecting data through the summer. Last year a record 2,507 sites were monitored across the UK.

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