£1000 grant from Gloucestershire Naturalists’ Society

Sue Smith receiving a £1,000 cheque from GNS Treasurer Andy Oliver

The Gloucestershire Branch was delighted to receive a cheque from Gloucestershire Naturalists’ Society (GNS) which will pay for the creation and production of the Prestbury Leaflet, the updated Rough Bank leaflet planned for later this year, and a new sign board for the butterfly nectar garden at Prinknash Abbey.  This will be a great help in highlighting these areas that are important to many aspects of wildlife in the county and educating people about what can be done to help butterfly and moth species on these sites.

GNS is the natural history recording organisation for Gloucestershire, recording all of the wildlife in the county. GNS publishes a quarterly newsletter, a journal, The Gloucestershire Naturalist and an annual Bird Report as well as organising lectures and field meetings.


Updated ‘white squares’ map

White Square MapThe white square map showing the distribution of butterfly records, has now been updated.  We still desperately need volunteers to record in the ‘white’ areas – these are areas for which there are no records.  If you live in or near these places or regularly visit them and can confidently identify butterflies, please could you do some butterfly recording there?  It may only involve a couple of visits, but more if you get the bug!  Please submit your records on a casual recording form which can be on the Downloads page. It is available both as an Excel form that can be filled in on the computer and as a Pdf file that can be printed and filled in by hand;  email or post the completed form to the County Recorder.  Please contact Chris Wiltshire, the County Butterfly Recorder at butterfly-recorder@gloucestershire-butterflies.org.uk or Vic Polley, Assistant Butterfly Recorder at vic@gloucestershire-butterflies.org.uk if you have any queries.

New Leaflet for the Prestbury Hill Reserves

We are lucky in Gloucestershire to have three Butterfly Conservation Reserves. Two of them, known as the Masts Field and Bill Smyllie Reserve, are linked as the Prestbury Hill Reserve.

The Prestbury Hill Reserve adjoins Cleeve Common – which covers most of Cleeve Hill, the highest point of the Cotswolds. This is one of the most extensive areas of limestone grassland in the Cotswolds, encompassing surrounding areas of private farmland as well.

The two parts of the reserve were purchased in 1992 and 1994, starting with a generous donation from Dr Bill Smyllie, an international expert on the Brown Argus butterfly. The beech wood separating the two parts is not owned by BC.

The Masts Field is part of a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) – legal protection for our most important areas for nature conservation. The reserve lies within the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and is designated Open Access land so may be enjoyed on foot in accordance with the regulations.

The new leaflet is printed on good quality A3 paper and folded so that the front looks like the picture shown – click it to see a larger version. The leaflet will be available at most Gloucestershire branch events and will be sent to new members in their introductory package. A version suitable for A4 printing can be downloaded here.

The cost of the new leaflet was supported by a generous donation from the Gloucestershire Naturalists’ Society.

Our third reserve is Rough Bank, we have a downloadable temporary leaflet and plan to produce one similar to the Prestbury Hill leaflet. An Ordnance Survey map showing its location is on our Useful maps page.



Minutes of 2016 AGM

The Gloucester branch AGM was held on 29th October. The minutes can be seen on the Downloads page.

Atlas of UK Butterflies 2010-2014

Butterfly Conservation has produced an atlas of UK butterflies. It is not available in paper form but you can view and/or download a PDF version at our downloads page. The Wall map is shown here as an example, click to enlarge the map. Read more …

More website changes

There have been three sets of changes to the website in the last two or three weeks.

The first batch of changes were to make maintenance of the website a lot easier. Most of them should have been invisible to everyone.

The second batch of changes were all about visibility.

Their purpose was to make the website responsive – this simply means it will look different depending on your screen. Previously pages had a fixed width and so on a narrow screen bits were chopped off; now the page becomes narrower to fit the screen. This can have unexpected results, for example the menu that is normally at the left of the screen may be moved to the bottom and everything may be a bit too small on a phone.

Finally, pictures in blog posts and some pages, e.g. the life cycle of the Orange-tip butterfly (now updated with more pictures), are expanded more conveniently than previously when clicked.

The pages accessed via Species & Habitats and Moth Maps on the menu are not responsive as they have been constructed in a different way.

If you encounter any problems with the changes please contact me via Web Master on the Committee & Contacts page.

Minutes of 2015 AGM

The Gloucesterhire Branch AGM was held on 7th November. Here are the minutes of the AGM and the reports presented during the afternoon. Read more …

Butterfly bonanza in Gloucestershire

Southwest Section members of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management  were very fortunate to see both imago and egg stages of the Marsh Fritillary butterfly Euphydryas aurinia at a beautiful limestone grassland reserve in Chalford, Gloucestershire. Read more …

Rough Bank Field Visit, Sunday 21 June 2015


The car park overflowed!

About 30 people attended the open afternoon along with Jennifer and myself. We split into three groups of ten to a group. Jennifer and I opted to join the group being led by Sue and Bob as we had met them before. It was our first visit to the reserve and as we set off along the bottom path with quite a breeze blowing we were all apprehensive as to maybe what we would see. Read more …

Stroud Festival of Nature

Stroud Festival of Nature Logo

The Stroud Festival of Nature is a two week celebration of nature of all forms in and around Stroud. There will be a launch event on Saturday 13th June at the Subscription Rooms in the centre of Stroud followed by a wide range of events – including butterflies and moths. Read more …

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