Welcome to Highland Branch of Butterfly Conservation
Butterfly Conservation is a registered charity
to the conservation of butterflies and moths.
New events and news stories are now
also being posted on the Branch 'In Your Area ' page at http://butterfly-conservation.org/313/highlands-and-islands-branch.html
You can also find us on FaceBook at facebook.com/ButterflyConservationHighlandsIslands
There is now also a Facebook group, Highland Moths
& Butterflies, to share photos, sightings and information.
You can also find us on Twitter -
BC Highland on Twitter
Please note that all events have been cancelled until further notice.
This is due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Please see
for updated guidance for moth and butterfly recording.
The 2019 WCBS Newsletter is now available
The 2020 edition of the branch newsletter,
the Chequered Skipper, was posted out to all branch members on Monday
Highland Branch covers Highland, Moray, the Western Isles, and Orkney and Shetland.
Our activities include recording butterflies and moths, organising events and field trips, and publishing newsletters, many of which you can download from this site.
We welcome contributions about interesting sightings of butterflies and moths, and queries relating to identification. The information you provide will appear on the In Your Area page at: http://butterfly-conservation.org/313/highlands-and-islands-branch.html
To get in touch, please contact:
of the Month
Roy Leverton illustrates a selection of characteristic moths to look out for in our area at different times of the year.
Please click on the links below for a month by month illustrated list.
January and February
November and December
Children's author Paul Andrews has signed a contract donating a
percentage of the sales from his children's books to Butterfly
Conservation. The four titles are as follows and can be found as
print on demand or for Kindle;
Busy Bee and the Endangered Meadow
Brown Bear's Big Day Out
Clever Dad and the Pirate Ship
Clever Dad and the Space Rocket
Wild Isle Projects
The Wild Isle Projects shop on Etsy donates to BC
Highland Branch, the shop can be seen on
Sexton-beetles often come to moth traps. With only 5 species occurrring in the Highlands it should be possible for moth trappers to identify them with confidence - if necessary referring to the keys on the HBRG website at: www.hbrg.org.uk/FoHW/Nicrophorus/Nicrophorus.html
HBRG is therefore asking moth-ers to report any records to email@example.com
Records should contain the usual what/when/where/who details, with a 6-figure OSGR. If in doubt, HBRG is happy to receive photos or specimens.
|Pots for Pollinators
Butterfly Conservation and B&Q are asking
gardeners to help the UK's butterflies,
bees and moths. See
here for more information.
Kentish Glory Pheromone Trials 2017 Report
This is a report that summarises the main findings of last years trials
and surveys. There was good success with some new sites being
found and further trials and survey work will be carried out this year.
There is a shorter version of the report which relates just to the
Highland branch area which will be published in the Chequered Skipper,
but you can read the full report
Dr David Barbour Obituary
David Barbour presented with his favourite tipple at the BCS Spring
Recorders’ gathering in 2018 after 21 years as Highland butterfly
recorder. Photo by Jim
David Barbour died in December 2019. You can read his
We have just found out that David
has been awarded the 2020 Royal Entomological Society’s Award for Insect
Conservation jointly with Dr Mark Young. This is awarded for an
outstanding contribution to insect conservation on the basis of lifetime
achievement, and the RES statement, which can be found
on their website reads:
David Barbour was an entomologist
who made a major contribution to the conservation of Scottish
butterflies and moths, notably the New Forest burnet Zygaena viciae. Thought
to be extinct, probably as a result of excessive collecting in the New
Forest, a population was discovered in Argyll in the 1960's. After a
serious decline in the 1980's, intervention by David and Mark Young
resulted in its successful recovery, and it remains the only known
population in the UK (Young and Barbour, 2004: Mark Young pers. comm.).
David worked as an independent consultant for many years after leaving
the Forestry Commission. His understanding of forestry and land
management generally made him well aware of the pressures on
biodiversity and the need to find practical solutions for insect
conservation alongside other land uses.
The AGM in 2019 was held on the
13th of April and the
minutes can be read here.
|Contacting Highland Branch
To contact Highland Branch on any matter relating to butterflies and moths in the Branch area, please email
BChighlandcontact@yahoo.com. Enquiries relating to identification are welcome, and if you can attach a photo, so much the better. Contributions for the Latest news page can also be submitted in this way.
You can also contact the Branch using the feedback form on the Contact us page.
To submit records of butterflies and moths from the Branch area, including the Hebrides and Northern Isles, please send them to the appropriate Butterfly Recorder or County Moth Recorder, whose contact details can be found on the Your records page.
|Chequered Skipper - Highland Branch 2019 newsletter
A pdf version of our 2019
newsletter has been uploaded to the newsletter section of the
|Atlas of UK Butterflies 2010 - 2014
Although not available in paper format, this report has UK distribution maps for all resident and regular migrant species apart from Large Blue based on the most recent five-year survey of the Butterflies for the New Millenium recording scheme. Maps show distribution in each 10km by 10km grid square for 2010-2014, as well as historical records. The report can be seen here.
Certain areas remain under-recorded, particularly Skye and the Small Isles, parts of Wester Ross and Central Sutherland. Anyone getting a chance to visit and record in these areas in the next two seasons could make a welcome contribution to filling in these gaps.
This list aims to include every species of macro-moth reliably recorded in Scotland, with an assessment of its Scottish status, as guidance for observers contributing to the National Moth Recording Scheme (NMRS). It updates and amends the previous lists of 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014
Notes on the Scottish Macro-moth List, 2017
Scottish Macro-moth List, 2017
(MS Excel file)
|The Wider Countryside Butterfly Survey (WCBS)
2019 WCBS Newsletter
The WCBS is a UK-wide project looking at changes in the populations of the commoner butterfly species. Before the WCBS was set up, systematic butterfly-monitoring was often restricted to nature reserves or other good butterfly areas. While this was very useful for monitoring the rarer species found at these sites, the results of such monitoring did not produce results representative of the countryside as a whole. The WCBS was devised with the intent to rectify this discrepancy, which it does by choosing survey sites at random.
Hundreds of one-kilometre squares have been randomly
chosen across the country, each one waiting to be surveyed
just twice a year by willing volunteers. Here in Highland
Branch (i.e. Highland, Moray, Orkney, Shetland and the Outer
Hebrides) we have 80 of these squares... and many have not yet been surveyed at all! Who knows what unusual butterflies might be hiding in these unexplored sites? Could you be the intrepid surveyor willing to go where no butterfly recorder has gone before? Or are you a seasoned WCBS-er wanting to continue with your existing site (or even to try a different one!)? Whichever description suits you best, please get in touch and I will furnish you with more information about the project and give you the locations of squares near you!
There is also more information on our "Surveys" page here.
Kirstie Ross is the new Highland Branch WCBS Champion
|Chequered Skipper Surveys
2012 - 2014
We have been very pleased with the interest in, and the results from, the 2012
- 2014 surveys.
The aim of the survey was to target recording at 100 1km squares that were predicted, through computer modeling, to be the most suitable 1km squares for the butterfly in Scotland, but where it had not previously been recorded.
To download a copy of the reports, please click here. (PDF file)
|Garden Moth Scheme 2012
The Garden Moth Scheme (GMS) runs from
the beginning of March to early November, with people
recording the numbers of around 300 species of the more common
moths in their gardens once a week throughout this period.
To download a copy of the reports including Highland data,
please click here.
|Moths of Caithness
This website has been launched to make available information about the status and distribution of moths in Caithness so as to encourage greater interest in the recording of moths in the County.
Please visit the site at: www.caithnessmoths.org.uk
few copies of 'Atlas of Butterflies in Highland and Moray',
published in 2008 by Butterfly Conservation Highland Branch
and Highland Biological Recording Group, are still available,
and we're offering them at the reduced price of £1 plus £1.40
p&p please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
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2019 Highland Branch|
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