Saving the small things that run the planet

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Help us save the Ladybird spider

The Ladybird spider (Eresus sandaliatus) is one of the UK’s most spectacular spiders, but also one of our most endangered. We need your help to safeguard the future of this species and so have launched this new funding appeal.

The Ladybird spider was thought to be extinct in Britain for over 70 years until its rediscovery in 1980; since then no other populations have been found. When first found, the remaining site supported only a few spiders, but through successful conservation management the population has grown to nearly 1000 individuals.

Since 2000 other colonies have been established on other Dorset heathlands. Spiders have been carefully released onto new sites – increasing the number of Ladybird spider populations in Dorset from one to eight. But there is still a lot of work to do.

To safeguard this spider for the future we need to establish a total of twenty populations in the wild. Therefore we need to continue the programme of releasing spiders onto new sites; we also need to monitor the existing populations to ensure that they are healthy and self-sustaining, and to undertake habitat management work to ensure that the sites are in the right condition for the spider.

With the funds raised we will:

  • establish new populations of the Ladybird spider
  • monitor the existing populations to ensure that they are healthy and sustainable
  • manage the habitat at Ladybird spider sites to allow populations to expand and spread naturally.

We are passionate that this beautiful and rare spider should be conserved and protected for existing and future generations to marvel at, and enjoy. We would love you to be a part of this.

Please click to donate to the conservation of the Ladybird spider