The Big Sussex Butterfly Count
Taking the pulse of nature
This week Sir David Attenborough launched the world’s biggest butterfly survey – The Big Butterfly Count. The Big Butterfly Count is a nationwide survey aimed at helping us assess the health of our environment. Butterflies are vital to ecosystems. They help pollinate fruit and vegetables and, second only to bees, they help put about 10% of our food on the table. Butterfly declines are an early warning for other wildlife losses; that’s why counting butterflies can be described as taking the pulse of nature.
East Sussex team wins
As part of the survey, two teams from Sussex scoured the countryside from the back of a Land Rover for The Big Sussex Butterfly Count, to see who could identify the most species in a day. The Purple Emperors were the West Sussex team, while the Silver Spotted Skippers represented East Sussex. It was a very close run, but West Sussex won by two species. The Mayor of Brighton and Hove, Councillor Bill Randall crowned the winning team at the butterfly haven at Dorothy Stringer School The ceremony formed part of the school’s Environmental Summer Fayre.