Insects

There are good populations of insects across all the habitats found on Dartmoor, but perhaps the most important assemblage occurs in the wet valleys in the farmland which fringes the moors. These flower-rich damp meadows support species that are rare throughout the UK and even worldwide, including the marsh fritillary butterfly, southern damselfly, narrow-bordered bee hawkmoth and bog hoverfly.

A few areas of bracken occurring on the edges of the open moorland provide home for two further nationally important butterflies, the high brown and pearl-bordered fritillaries. The heathlands support a number of attractive insects such as the emperor moth, green hairstreak and the bilberry bumblebee.

Old oak woodlands are rich in a very distinctive group of insects, which on Dartmoor include the blue ground beetle and Heckford’s pygmy moth, a species found nowhere else in the world.

Dartmoor National Park works in partnership with Butterfly Conservation, British Dragonfly Society, Buglife and Devon Moth Group

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