Two butterfly hotspots identified in St Albans

Two butterfly hotspots have been found

Two butterfly hotspots have been found - Credit: Archant

Two butterfly hotspots have been identified in the St Albans district despite the demise of the attraction dedicated to the insects.

A newly-published book, Butterflies of Hertfordshire and Middlesex, by the county’s official butterfly recorder Andrew Wood, reveals two local sites where rare and not so rare species can be found.

They are on Bricket Wood Common, which is described as a good place to find woodland butterflies such as the Purple Emperor, White Admiral and Silver-washed Fritillary, and at Heartwood Forest in Sandridge where the White-letter and Purple Hairstreak butterflies have been found as well as grassland species.

Despite the closure of Butterfly World in Chiswell Green the Small Blue, which was thought to have disappeared from Herts, has established thriving colonies.

The book is published by Hertfordshire Natural History Society (HNHS) and is the first comprehensive guide to every species found in the two counties. It looks at the reasons why some species are increasing while others have declined or disappeared altogether.

Andrew said: “The history of butterflies in our area during the past 30 years is, in many ways, a microcosm of the issues and challenges facing those of us who enjoy wildlife and want to understand how best to protect the variety of our different species.

“Meeting their varying needs is often a complex task and we know from the past 30 years how limited knowledge can lead to poor decisions. But by helping more people to appreciate our butterflies and look out for them, we can increase the chances that future success stories in conservation outnumber our failures.

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Butterflies of Hertfordshire and Middlesex is available for £19.99, including postage and package, until the end of January. Details can be obtained from or from the HNHS secretary at 250 Sandridge Road, St Albans AL1 4AL.