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DFN Project SEARCH Alumni Officer Helps Launch The Big Butterfly Count 2023!

We are delighted that group of students with special educational needs have helped launch this year’s nationwide Big Butterfly Count with an official event at Undershaw in Surrey.

The event marked the first day of the Big Butterfly Count, an annual UK-wide survey run by wildlife charity Butterfly Conservation, who are urging the whole nation to help track and protect Britain’s butterflies by taking part in the Count.

The Big Butterfly Count is co-sponsored by The DFN Foundation, which is also a long-standing partner of DFN Project SEARCH and Undershaw, an independent specialist SEND school providing a high standard of care and education for children aged 9 to 19 with learning difficulties and additional needs.

Throughout the Big Butterfly Count, the British public is being asked to spend 15 minutes in any sunny spot and record the number and type of butterflies they see to help scientists discover the impact of last year’s record-breaking heatwave on local wildlife. The initiative has been endorsed and supported by celebrities such as Sir David Attenborough (President of Butterfly Conservation) who said: “A few precious moments spent watching a stunning Red Admiral or Peacock butterfly feeding amongst the flowers in my garden never fails to bring me great pleasure.”

David Forbes Nixon OBE, Chairman of the DFN Foundation which sponsors the Big Butterfly Count, said: “The DFN Foundation is thrilled to once again sponsor the much-anticipated Big Butterfly Count this year, supporting Butterfly Conservation in their crucial work protecting butterflies from extinction. I am delighted that Undershaw, an initiative of the DFN Foundation, will be taking a leading role in launching this year’s Big Butterfly Count. The school will host an action-packed event, educating pupils and the local community on the importance of biodiversity and conservation through the enchanting world of butterflies.’

Last year almost 100,000 Counts took place up and down the country, with participants spending a combined 2.5 years counting butterflies in their gardens, local parks and in the countryside. The information gathered helps to inform conservation projects and government policies and supports other experts with their research and vital work to protect our planet.

The Big Butterfly Count is open to everyone, of any age, living in towns, cities or the countryside and is running from 14 July to 6 August across the UK. For more information and to participate, simply visit www.bigbutterflycount.org or download the free Big Butterfly Count app.