Wildflower meadows project helps conserve our bees and butterflies

Wednesday 19th November 2014

Over the last two year’s Buglife’s ‘Restoring Ryedale’s Lowland Meadows’, has helped to restore and create approximately 60 acres of wildflower-rich meadows and pastures across the Ryedale landscape.  This work is part of Buglife’s national plan of action called B-Lines, which aims to create and restore wildflower meadows to provide food for pollinating insects such as bumblebees, hoverflies, butterflies and moths.

Last week the UK Government launched a National Pollinator Strategy which sets out a 10 year plan to help pollinating insects survive and thrive. The Strategy outlines actions to support and protect the many pollinating insects which contribute to our food production and the diversity of our environment. Buglife’s B-Lines work in Ryedale and other parts of the UK is already helping these insects targeted by the national strategy.

Bee orchid (Ophrys apifera) at Stonegrave (c) Leanna Dixon

Paul Evans, Buglife’s B-Lines Office said “The Government’s national pollinator strategy has highlighted the loss of wildflowers from our countryside as a major cause of pollinator declines. Wildflower meadows have been in serious decline for many years and this spells danger for pollinating insects which need pollen and nectar food sources. Our B-Lines work, such as the meadow creation in Ryedale is already showing what can be done, but we need to do much more across the UK”.

The Ryedale Meadows project has carried out work across a number of sites in Ryedale from Stamford Bridge to Helmsley, made possible through a grant award from the SITA Trust. Although wildflower-rich meadows take many years to develop, this summer saw swathes of flowers and large numbers of buzzing bumblebees on the projects sites, including the Yorkshire Arboretum at Castle Howard.

Click here to find out how our B-Lines are growing