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Rare grizzled skipper butterfly discovered after Bantycock Quarry near Newark was restored




An almost extinct butterfly has been discovered at a restored quarry.

The grizzled skipper has been discovered in restored areas of Bantycock Quarry near Newark after years of carefully planned biodiversity work.

Left to right: Jane Broomhead and Bill Bacon from the Butterfly Conservation charity; Kevin Glasper, Bantycock Quarry manager; and Rachel Blackham, the ecologist who spotted the species on the site. (49028733)
Left to right: Jane Broomhead and Bill Bacon from the Butterfly Conservation charity; Kevin Glasper, Bantycock Quarry manager; and Rachel Blackham, the ecologist who spotted the species on the site. (49028733)

It was identified by consultant ecologist Rachel Blackham, who undertakes regular checks on site to ensure that wildlife is not disturbed by the quarry operation.

She said: “I was absolutely delighted to find a grizzled skipper when carrying out one of our regular site inspections.

“One of the aims of restoration at Bantycock is to create more of this type of habitat, which will be specifically managed to encourage grizzled skipper to also colonise other areas of the site.”

The grizzled skipper was almost extinct in the county in the 1990s. Its numbers had more than halved in 40 years and it was recognised as a conservation target.

Kevin Glasper, quarry manager, said: “This is great news for our quarrying team and for the company as a whole. At the same time as managing the operation of the quarry to supply the adjacent Jericho Works with gypsum, we are carefully restoring previous operational areas with significant advice from biodiversity experts like Rachel.

“This success story is a testament to the hard work of our team and in particular our grounds maintenance contractor David Burton who has managed and maintained the area where the grizzled skipper was spotted.

“We are delighted our plans are paying off and look forward to celebrating more biodiversity gains in the future.”

Bill Bacon, a volunteer for the Butterfly Conservation charity, said: “Butterfly Conservation is thrilled with news of the recent discovery of the grizzled skipper at Bantycock Quarry.

“There is every chance that the grizzled skipper will become permanently established at Bantycock Quarry where the ground conditions are likely to provide ideal breeding habitat for this rare and elusive butterfly.”



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