Butterfly numbers begin to recover

Garden and greenhouse enthusiasts in the UK may have noticed a spike in the number of butterflies fluttering into their green space.

Reporting on the results of The Big Butterfly Count, the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) revealed that sightings are up, with approximately 187,000 of the winged creatures spotted around the country.

While the two most prominent species were the Small White and Large White, the orange and brown-coloured Gatekeeper was third on the list.

The RHS revealed that this was particularly pleasing news as the latter had been one of the varieties to struggle of late and now appears to be thriving in both urban and rural areas once more.

However, the most noticeable turnaround was the Small Tortoiseshell, which had faced a real battle for survival, with populations dropping by 82 per cent in the south-east.

The new figures show that the once-threatened species has won its war with disease caused by parasitic flies to become the ninth most common in the UK.

Despite the good news, Butterfly Conservation has warned that the creatures face a continuing threat of extinction.

In other news, the RHS recently reported that scientists believe that certain plants could play a major role in reducing temperatures in the world’s hottest cities.