Hedgerow butterfly – the Brown Hairstreak Thecla betulae
The Brown Hairstreak butterfly is a Priority Species for conservation due to widespread decline in numbers and distribution. This decline is a direct result of modern hedgerow management techniques. Annual flailing of hedgerows destroys the preferred egg laying sites of females – the joint between fresh and old growth on Blackthorn, a common hedgerow species. Laid in late summer, the egg is destroyed as hedgerows are flailed in autumn and winter.
The Dunsmore area is in the northern extent of its current range, but a small population exists in the area between Ryton Woods and Ryton Pools Country Park.
We are working with Butterfly Conservation Warwickshire and the Ryton Pools Country Park team to improve hedgerows for this species.