The number of butterflies in Great Britain this year is at its highest since 2019, according to a count. This was announced by the organization Butterfly Conservation.

The admiral was seen most often – the species is becoming more common in Great Britain due to rising temperatures due to climate change. In the long term, however, animal rights activists recorded a “worrying” decline in many species. In the second most common species, the reddish-brown oxeye, they accounted for a decline of 28 percent since counts began in 2010.

British butterfly census largest in the world

On average, the census volunteers saw a dozen butterflies between July 14th and August 6th. Last year there were only nine. In total, the almost 95,000 participants discovered more than 1.5 million butterflies during 15-minute counts in gardens, parks, schoolyards and rural areas. The UK butterfly census is the largest in the world, according to Butterfly Conservation.

According to scientist Zoe Randle from Butterfly Conservation, the mixed weather this summer with a lot of rain was responsible for the increase in the number of butterflies this year: “There were plenty of green food plants for caterpillars and many nectar-rich flowers for adult butterflies.” However, the long-term trend is worrying for some of the most common species.

Situation in Germany

In Germany, noticeably few butterflies were spotted during a counting campaign by nature conservation associations this year. “2023 is really not a butterfly year at all. Never before have we been reported so few butterflies,” insect expert Laura Breitkreuz commented at the end of August on the results of the “Insect Summer” campaign by the Nature Conservation Association (Nabu) and the Bavarian State Association for Birds and Nature Conservation (LBV).