Today an ambitious new plan for helping our bees, butterflies, hoverflies and other pollinating insects is being launched by Buglife and South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).
The South Devon B-Lines project will create rivers of wildflowers across the countryside connecting the South Devon’s best wildlife sites from the west to the east, and from the north to the south, linking Dartmoor to the coast, and linking our towns and urban areas to the countryside.
The new B-Lines map launched by the partnership shows the proposed routes and invites farmers, landowners and the public to get involved to put the buzz back into our countryside.
Andrew Whitehouse, Buglife South West Manager, said “Bees and other pollinators are disappearing from our countryside because of a lack of wildflower-rich habitats. By creating B-Lines we can help wildlife move across our countryside, saving threatened species and making sure that there are plenty of pollinators out there to help us grow crops.”
Funding from South Devon AONB, Natural England and the Naturesave Trust has enabled the B-Lines project to produce the B-Lines map. The project now plans to work directly with landowners, provide advice and training and create and restore meadows and wildflower-rich grasslands along the B-Lines routes.
Andrew added “South Devon is one of the best areas in the country to find some of our most threatened bees. The B-Lines project will help to ensure that these and other wildlife from butterflies to bats are able to thrive. A countryside rich in wildlife is good for people and for the economy.”
Roger English of South Devon AONB said “In order to create B-Lines for the area we need farmers and landowners to join in and support the project. We would love to hear from anyone who would like to participate in the B-Lines project at all scales, and in particular anyone who has land which they would be interested in restoring to wildflower-rich grassland.”
Phil Stocks, Lead Advisor Natural England said “We’re really looking forward to seeing how the B-lines map can help promote and extend the network of wildflower-rich grasslands across South Devon. It’s vital that a network exists and wildlife isn’t restricted to isolated islands. The grasslands will also help enhance the landscape which is enjoyed by both residents and tourists.’