Reintroduction of the Black-veined White Butterfly to South Devon

Project: Research

Project Details


The Black-Veined White, Aporia crataegi is a native UK butterfly, once found across southern England and South Wales. This butterfly was first noted in the UK in 1667. It was recorded in the 18th and 19th centuries but considered largely extinct by the 1880s, though It lingered in Kent until the 1920s. It is speculated that its decline and extinction was due to factors such as climatic changes, and that a succession of cold and wet Summer and Autumn weather throughout the nineteenth century ultimately led to its demise.

Currently, the Black-veined White butterfly range margins are changing, with a described northern expansion in Finland and Denmark and an upward altitudinal shift in southern mainland European possibly indicative of responses to climate change and/or habitat change. Bioclimatic models revealed that the projected drying climate in south-eastern Britain is expected to provide condition that are highly suitable for this butterfly, at least until 2050. Therefore, this appears to be a suitable time to attempt a reintroduction of this species in Southern England. However, conservation strategies including re-introductions at local, regional and national levels, can be particularly effective only if species resource requirements are known and can be maintained within landscapes.

A consortium of organisations and individuals, led by Ambios Ltd (a not-for-profit training organisation focused on nature recovery) has convened a Working Group to inform, guide and progress work, with a view to possibly import larvae in 2025.
Effective start/end date1/06/23 → …

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 15 - Life on Land