The big butterfly count at Hever Castle & Gardens

Butterfly - The big butterfly count at Hever Castle
July 23 2015 | Garden What's on

Hever Castle & Gardens are encouraging visitors to take part in the big butterfly count as they enjoy their day out in the grounds.

The big butterfly count is a nationwide survey that was launched in 2010 and is now the world’s biggest survey of butterflies. Over 44,000 people took part in the survey last year and nearly 560,000 butterflies were counted.

Butterfly - The big butterfly count at Hever Castle

Photo credit: Matt Berry @savethebutterflies


The survey is used to help assess the health of the environment as butterflies react very quickly to changes in their environment. This means that any butterfly declines are an early warning for potential losses of other types of wildlife. It is hoped that the survey will help produce a plan to protect butterflies in the long term, as well as provide a better understanding of the effect climate change has on wildlife.

There are plenty of beautiful places within the gardens for butterfly spotting and all you have to do is count the butterflies you see in a 15 minute period. If you are counting from a fixed position, say whilst you were having a picnic, count the maximum number of each species that you can see at a single time. If you are doing your count on a walk, then simply total up the number of each butterfly species that you see during the 15 minutes. If you’re not sure which species are which you can download a handy identification chart.

Top Tip: The Lake Walk is great for seeing all kinds of wildlife, not just butterflies, and you can download an enjoyable nature trail to take along with you.

Water lilies - Lake Walk Hever Castle

 The big butterfly count runs from 17 July – 9 August and you can find out more information about the survey and how to take part on the big butterfly count website