Barker-Mill Foundation boosts funds to protect New Forest wildlife

In a bid to preserve the key the declining species of the New Forest, the Barker-Mill Foundation (BMF) has donated £2,500 to the Butterfly Conservation (BC) along with an extra £200 to New Milton Hedgehog Rescue, following previous donations to the organisation from BMF.

BC is an organisation dedicated to saving the UK’s butterflies, moths and their habitats. Not only does the organisation restore habitats for a range of wildlife, but also creates places where people can enjoy the beauty and wonder of nature.

BMF has donated £2,500 to the Hampshire and Isle of Wight branch of the organisation which will enable BC to deliver essential land improvement work in the New Forest. The improvements are set to increase the amount of suitable habitat for the increasingly rare Pearl-bordered Fritillary and Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary butterflies which will halt and reverse their decline, and ensure that they survive for future generations to enjoy.

BC spokesperson, Dr Dan Hoare, said: “This donation will make a big difference to our efforts to save the New Forest’s rare Fritillary butterflies. With the help of BMF, we will be able to support local volunteers with training days and conservation work parties so they can take an active part in creating suitable habitat for the Pearl-bordered Fritillary, ready for us to come and see this beautiful butterfly in the spring.

“Our conservation programme involves working with land managers to improve the conditions for the butterfly and then harnessing the power of skilled volunteers to search the woods and monitor how the species respond. That way we can be sure when our efforts have worked and learn how best to carry out future habitat management, ensuring this woodland butterfly can thrive into the future.”

As well as endangered butterflies, Hampshire is also seeing an increase of hedgehogs suffering in the winter months. New Milton Hedgehog Rescue is dedicated to rehabilitating hedgehogs back into the wild.

BMF has previously donated to New Milton Hedgehog Rescue and has yet again boosted its funds with the £200 donation, allowing the team to purchase a new suction machine. The machine will allow rescuers to remove fly eggs and maggots from injured hedgehogs quickly and less invasively than before; reducing the stress they’re under.

Tim Jobling, Trustee at BMF said: “Hampshire is a beautiful county famous for its sublime countryside, and the New Forest is the jewel in the crown. We believe that it’s important to support the biodiversity within the forest and both the Butterfly Conservation and New Milton Hedgehog Rescue work endlessly to protect butterflies and hedgehogs in the New Forest.

“This year has been so mild that many hedgehogs have given birth to more than one litter, with some baby hedgehogs being born later on in the year than expected. As a result, these baby hedgehogs are not big enough to survive the winter – New Milton Hedgehog Rescue has been inundated with hedgehogs this season and need support.

“We’re extremely happy to support both BC and New Milton Hedgehog Rescue; both charities do a great deal in the New Forest area and ensure beautiful butterflies and hedgehogs will be here for generations to come.”

To find out more about Butterfly Conservation and the amazing work they do please visit http://butterfly-conservation.org and to find out more about New Milton Hedgehog Rescue take a look at their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/newmiltonhedgehogrescue/

To apply for funding from the Barker-Mill Foundation please visit http://www.barkermillfoundation.com/apply/.