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Delivering the Living Landscapes Vision in Essex
‘Buckthorn for Brimstone’ Campaign – working together for wildlife in Tendring
This important new initiative aims to plant hundreds of Common buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica) shrubs across the district, over the coming months.
The shrubs will act primarily as the sole food plant of the beautiful Brimstone butterfly (Gonepteryx rhamni) - but also to support many bird and small mammal species, who will also feed on the buckthorn fruits.
To help achieve its goal the partnership is looking for commercial and private landowners including gardeners, allotment holders, schools, community groups and parish councils who would like to plant one or more Common buckthorn shrubs on their land.
The Campaign is part of the wider Living Landscapes Vision, championed by Essex Wildlife Trust as part of a national initiative, supported by all forty-seven Wildlife Trusts and the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts (RSWT).
The on-going aim of this Vision is to ‘Restore, Recreate and Reconnect’ wildlife-rich areas for the benefit of ‘Wildlife, People and Local Economy’.
The Brimstone is a medium-large butterfly, with leaf-shaped wings. The male is bright yellow whilst the female a very pale green.
It is believed that the word ‘butterfly’ comes from the male’s yellow colourisation: ‘butter-coloured fly’.
The Brimstone is legendary in its ability to find the required shrub on which to lay its eggs; the Common or Alder Buckthorn.
The partnership is urging people to contact them with news of Brimstone butterfly sightings or to register their interest in the Campaign.
Recording sightings of the Brimstone butterfly will allow the partnership to monitor the success of the campaign as well as identifying corridor links required to guide any future planting programmes.
Sightings of Brimstone butterflies, eggs or caterpillars should be registered at www.essexwtrecords.org.uk and these records will be shared between partners to inform the Campaign of its success within the District.
Anyone interested in obtaining free shrubs as part of this campaign should register their interest by emailing Emma Brogden, Living Landscapes Coordinator for Essex Wildlife Trust (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 12th February 2016.
Common buckthorn plants will be available for collection, subject to prior registration, from Tendring District Council offices on Friday 11th March and Saturday 12th March 2016.
Notes to Editors
Essex Wildlife Trust Essex Wildlife Trust is the county’s leading conservation charity. It has more than 33,000 members, manages and protects over 8,200 acres of land on 87 nature reserves, 2 nature parks and runs 9 visitor centres. The aim of Essex Wildlife Trust is to Protect Wildlife for the Future and for the people of Essex. It is supported financially by members, local businesses and grant making organisations. It is one of the largest of the 47 county wildlife trusts that work together throughout the British Isles as The Wildlife Trusts.
Tendring District Council is the local authority responsible for providing a variety of services in the Tendring District and actively works with third sector groups such as Essex Wildlife Trust and Butterfly Conservation to improve the local environment for wildlife and people. www.tendringdc.gov.uk
Butterfly Conservation is the pre-eminent national charity helping threatened butterflies, moths and their habitats. Members receive informative seasonal branch newsletters, a programme of interesting events to attend such as visits to butterfly reserves, and the full colour national magazine ‘Butterfly’. The local branch is also actively involved in local conservation projects and participation is encouraged. www.butterfly-conservation.org