Buzzing about B-lines: UK wildflower scheme launched to boost insect populations
by Toria Bunney
What's Going On Here?
This Monday will see UK conservation charity Buglife launch a new network of insect corridors across the UK, in partnership with Defra.
What Does This Mean?
The network, consisting of a series of pathways linking existing and potential wildflower corridors, will enable insects to move more freely across the country. These B-Lines, as they will be known, will be an innovative and attractive solution to recent land-use change across the country due to industrial farming and urban sprawl. These new nature corridors will benefit a variety of insects, help protect native pollinators such as bees and butterflies, and encourage biodiversity.
Why Should We Care?
Over the past few decades, insect numbers have been in decline in the UK. A study earlier this year showed that numbers had fallen by 25% in the past 30 years. This is largely due to habitat loss from an increase in urban environments leaving pockets of small, isolated habitat leaving only hostile environments where insects aren’t able to move around freely.
A major report by the Wildlife Trust highlighted the scale of the catastrophe. It outlined that over the last 48 years, 41 percent of the UK’s wildlife had suffered strong or moderate decreases in numbers. It is hoped that the new corridors will help restore populations crucial for biodiversity and healthy ecosystems, by helping to pollinate plants as food for other creatures and through natural waste recycling.
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