Butterfly, Moth and Dragonfly Surveys

Butterflies, day-flying moths and dragonflies are popular and attractive insects, and also a highly visible addition to any wildlife area. Successful management to maintain or encourage these beautiful insects onto a site provides obvious and enjoyable benefits in conservation or recreation areas. Several of these insect species are listed as Priority Species on the UK Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP), a list of those species designated as priorities for national conservation strategies.

Butterflies are generally considered to be good indicator species, as they are particularly sensitive to subtle changes in habitat or climate, therefore butterfly surveys are a straightforward and very useful tool in determining the success of management on a site and in influencing its future management.

An increase in obvious and charismatic species such as butterflies, dragonflies and bumblebees will often greatly improve the perception of the 'wildness' of a site.

EMEC Ecology invertebrate ecologists are experienced in carrying out butterfly, day-flying and night-flying moth and dragonfly surveys. Recent and long-term ongoing surveys include:

  • Long-term monitoring of the butterfly populations of a grassland site for a major retail and manufacturing company.
  • Butterfly surveys of an active power station to determine the presence of BAP species on the site.
  • Evening moth trapping for county rarities as part of an on-going management plan for a major holiday company.
  • A dragonfly survey was undertaken at a site near Newark-on-Trent to determine if the locally rare golden-ringed dragonfly was present within the vicinity of proposed floodbank works.
  • Habitat assessment surveys to determine the suitability of a site for the marsh fritillary butterfly.

Our surveys are usually carried out by walking a set number of transects. EMEC Ecology uses the method which forms the basis of the UK's Butterfly Monitoring Scheme (BMS). This involves the surveyor counting the numbers of each species of butterfly seen 2.5m either side and 5m in front whilst walking at a steady pace along the transect in weather suitable for butterfly activity. This has been shown to be an accurate method of assessing change in butterfly distributions and population size over time. EMEC Ecology's dragonfly surveys follow the methodology developed and used by the British Dragonfly Society.

Our clients currently range from individual landowners, farmers and small to medium sized businesses, up to large multi-national companies and government agencies, including Natural England.

Our invertebrate surveyors are able to undertake specific butterfly or dragonfly surveys, throughout Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire and further afield including the whole of the East Midlands and throughout the United Kingdom.

If you require a butterfly survey, moth survey or dragonfly survey, then the invertebrate ecologists at EMEC Ecology are here to meet your needs in a cost effective and timely manner. Please get in contact via mail@emec-ecology.co.uk or 0115 964 4828 to discuss your needs.