Skip to main content Skip to accessibility
This website is not compatible with your web browser. You should install a newer browser. If you live in Jersey and need help upgrading call the States of Jersey web team on 440099.
Government of

Information and public services for the Island of Jersey

L'înformâtion et les sèrvices publyis pouor I'Île dé Jèrri

  • Choose the service you want to log in to:


    Update your notification preferences


    Access government services


    Clear goods through customs or claim relief

  • Talentlink

    View or update your States of Jersey job application

Help needed with butterfly count

21 March 2012

Local volunteers are being sought to join the Jersey Butterfly Monitoring Scheme (JBMS).

On Saturday 24 March, the Department of the Environment initiative, which uses its volunteers to make a weekly count of butterflies at 36 locations around the Island, will hold its annual one-day training event for existing and prospective volunteers.

The day provides workshops and guest speakers and is open to anyone who would like to learn more about the Island’s butterfly population and help provide data collected to monitor the health of the Island’s ecosystems.

Natural Environment Officer at the Department of the Environment, Dr Paul Chambers, said that the JBMS, which has been running since 2004, informs the States of Jersey’s 'State of the Environment’ reporting and contributes to measures of progress against the commitments that the Island has made under international environmental agreements.

“Butterflies are sensitive to changes in local environmental conditions which, coupled with their rapid lifecycle, makes them ideal indicators as to the state of Jersey’s environment. By monitoring the abundance and distribution of individual species from year to year, it is possible to measure the impact of local policy initiatives, such as agri-environment schemes, as well as the effect of local and regional environmental changes,” he said.

The primary aims of the scheme are to:

  • provide information at a local level on changes in the abundance of species
  • detect trends which may indicate long term changes in their status
  • provide a reliable, long-term, estimate of population changes in local butterfly species, which can be compared with elsewhere
  • monitor changes at individual sites
  • assess the impact of local factors such as habitat change caused by land management activities
  • provide information on aspects of the population ecology and phenology of individual species, in relation to environmental changes (including climate change) and to butterfly ecology

During the training day there will be workshops for individuals who would like to participate in the JBMS and want to learn about local and national butterfly identification skills and survey methods. The event will also hear from experts from the UK, Jersey and Guernsey.

“We are lucky this year to be joined by Dr Tim Sparks from the University of Coventry who will be speaking about phenology – the study of how and why plants and animals are reacting to changes in our seasons – and Rich Austin, a lepidopterist from the Société Guernesiase, will be speaking about Channel Island butterflies and bugs,” said Dr Chambers.

Active JBMS members will also be talking about their discoveries and work during the 2011 monitoring season. “We welcome everyone who has an interest in butterflies and moths, whatever their level of expertise. The information that is produced by the scheme is extremely valuable to us and the JBMS is a fascinating way to learn more about Jersey’s natural environment,” said Dr Chambers.

The JBMS training day will be held on Saturday 24 March between 10am and 4pm at the Howard Davis Farm, Trinity. If you would like further information or would like to reserve a place contact Paul Chambers on +44 (0) 1534 441630 or by email.
Email Paul Chambers

Back to top
rating button