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Attenborough with BBC chart

Sir David Attenborough is encouraging nature lovers to embrace the UK’s long heritage of amateur natural history by counting Commas, Marbled Whites, Small Coppers, Gatekeepers and other common butterflies between 19 July and 10 August.

He explained: “The UK is a nation of amateur naturalists and we have a proud tradition of celebrating and studying our wildlife.  By taking part in the Big Butterfly Count this summer you can contribute to this heritage and discover the fantastic butterflies and other wildlife that share your garden, parks and countryside.  Butterflies fought back last year after a terrible 2012 but despite this, butterfly numbers were still below average. Three-quarters of the UK’s butterflies are in decline and one-third are in danger of extinction.  This is bad news for butterflies and it is bad news for the UK’s birds, bees, bats and other wildlife. This is because butterflies are a key indicator species of the health of our environment – if they are struggling, then many other species are struggling also.”

Taking part in the Count is easy – find a sunny place and spend just 15 minutes counting every butterfly seen and then submit sightings online at www.bigbutterflycount.org 

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