Race to Save Rare Butterfly from Extinction

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Marsh fritillary

Y Parc Cenedlaethol yn llunio cynllun i achub glöyn byw prin rhag diflannu’n llwyr yn Sir Benfro

Mae Awdurdod Parc Cenedlaethol Arfordir Penfro yn gwneud mwy o ymdrech i achub glöyn byw britheg y gors, a oedd unwaith yn gyffredin yng Nghymru ond sydd bellach yn agos at ddiflannu yn Sir Benfro.

Nod y strategaeth newydd ar raddfa’r dirwedd, a ariennir gan Bartneriaeth Natur Sir Benfro, yw gwella dyfodol rhywogaethau prin, sy’n dibynnu ar rwydweithiau o laswelltiroedd corsiog sy’n gyfoeth o flodau ar draws y dirwedd.

Mae llawer o’r cynefin hwn, sy’n gartref i hoff fwyd ei larfa – tamaid y cythraul (succisa pratensis) wedi’i golli oherwydd draeniad, plannu coed amhriodol ac esgeulustod rheoli glaswelltiroedd yn draddodiadol, gydag anifeiliaid trwm, fel gwartheg, yn pori’n ysgafn.

Dywedodd Swyddog Bioamrywiaeth Awdurdod y Parc Cenedlaethol, Sarah Mellor: “Mae britheg y gors yn Sir Benfro bellach mewn sefyllfa fregus iawn. Rydym yn credu ei bod eisoes wedi diflannu mewn nifer o ardaloedd yn ei hamrywiaeth flaenorol, ac nid yw wedi cael ei gweld ar Benrhyn Tyddewi ers 2013. Credir bod y boblogaeth o amgylch Keeston a Tiers Cross hefyd wedi diflannu erbyn hyn.

“Mae’n rhaid i ni ddod o hyd i ffordd o greu lle i fywyd gwyllt yn ein tirwedd, er mwyn sicrhau bod natur yn gallu ffynnu ar gyfer cenedlaethau’r dyfodol. Mae’n eithaf sobr meddwl y gallai’r rhywogaeth hon ddiflannu o Sir Benfro yn ystod fy oes. Mae gennym gyfrifoldeb i beidio â gadael i hyn ddigwydd ar ein gwyliadwriaeth ni.

“Hyd yn oed yn yr ardaloedd hynny lle mae’n dal i fodoli, rydym wedi gweld dirywiad dramatig, er enghraifft, o gwmpas Mynachlogddu, roedd yn arfer cael ei chofnodi ar 32 safle, ond ers 2015, dim ond mewn saith safle y mae wedi’i gweld.”

Mae Awdurdod y Parc Cenedlaethol eisoes wedi cymryd camau i achub y glöyn byw prin drwy helpu tirfeddianwyr i gael rheolaeth addas o’u safleoedd drwy gymorth grant a darparu anifeiliaid pori addas, drwy Rwydwaith Pori Sir Benfro a’r Cynllun Gwarchod y Parc.

Bydd y strategaeth newydd yn cynnwys galluogi staff a gwirfoddolwyr Awdurdod y Parc i gynnal arolygon wedi’u targedu mewn safleoedd ledled y sir, yn ogystal â helpu tirfeddianwyr i reoli eu tir mewn ffordd sensitif er mwyn helpu i sicrhau dyfodol y glöyn byw prin hwn.

Marsh fritillary Image by Ian Lindsay from Pixabay

The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority is stepping up efforts to save the marsh fritillary butterfly, which was once widespread in Wales but is now close to extinction in Pembrokeshire.

Funded by the Pembrokeshire Nature Partnership, the new landscape scale strategy aims to improve the fortunes of the rare species, which relies on networks of flower rich marshy grasslands across the landscape.

Much of this habitat, which is home to the favourite food of its larva – the devil’s bit scabious (succisa pratensis), has been lost due to drainage, inappropriate tree planting and the neglect of traditional management of grasslands through light grazing with heavy animals such as cattle.

National Park Authority biodiversity officer Sarah Mellor said: “The marsh fritillary in Pembrokeshire is now in a very precarious position. We think it has already become extinct in a number of areas in its former range and it has not been seen on the St Davids Peninsula since 2013. The population around Keeston and Tiers Cross is also now thought to be extinct.

“We must find a way to make space for wildlife in our landscape to ensure that nature can thrive for future generations. It is quite sobering to think this species could disappear from Pembrokeshire in my lifetime. We have a responsibility not to let this happen on our watch.

“Even in those areas where it remains we have seen dramatic declines, for example around Mychanchlogddu it used to be recorded from 32 sites, but since 2015 it has only been seen at seven sites.”

The National Park Authority has already stepped up its action to rescue the rare butterfly by assisting landowners to bring sites into suitable management through grant aid and providing suitable grazing animals through the Pembrokeshire Grazing Network and the Conserving the Park Scheme.

The new strategy will include mobilising Park Authority staff and volunteers to undertake targeted surveys at sites across the county, as well as helping landowners to manage their land in a sensitive way to help ensure the future of this rare butterfly.

Kitty Parsons

Kitty has forgotten how long she has been here now but she loves Pembrokeshire for its beauty and it's people. She spends her time searching out stories for pembrokeshire.online, swimming in the sea , drawing and painting as Snorkelfish and eating cake. She says "Pembrokeshire.online has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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