Endangered Serbian butterflies – working together

The project and project activities

After a successful realization of the previous two projects (Endangered Serbian Butterflies: Urgent Need for Research and Conservation and Setting up the Tools for Conservation) which were financed by the Rufford Foundation, in March this year we started working on a third project: Endangered Serbian Butterflies – Working Together. You can find the details about this project on the official site of the Rufford Foundation.

The planned activities are divided into three groups and will be accomplished during this year and the next one.

  1. Field research

    • Mapping the distribution of Southern Festoon (Zerynthia polyxena) and Eastern Festoon (Zerynthia cerisy) with special attention given to understudied areas where these two species were not recorded.

    • Mapping targeted species: Euphydryas maturnaEuphydryas auriniaParnassius apolloApatura metisColias caucasicaCarcharodus orientalisMelitaea ornataPyrgus cinarae. Besides these, targeted species include butterflies which are potentially extinct in Serbia (Lopinga achineLeptidea morseiColias myrmidone), and those which may be new to our fauna, such as Melitaea brithomartisMuschampia tessellumErebia triariaErynnis marloyiHipparchia sentesPseudochazara antheleaTarucus balcanicus and others.

    • Transects as a method for monitoring change in population number of butterflies. You can enter your data on the site monitoring.biologer.org. We are also planning to merge this with our Biologer application for Android devices. The more people take place in this part, the better insight we will get about our butterfly fauna.

  2. Software development and contribution to science

    • Digitalization of published literature.

    • Development of Biologer. Upgrading the software which was developed as a part of activities in the Rufford project of Ana Golubović.

    • Serbian Red List of Butterflies.

  3. Promotion

    • Production of promo material and getting media’s attention.

    • Writing texts about Serbian butterflies. Our team will take part in a project of Biological Society “Dr Sava Petrović”, so there will soon be texts about butterflies on Serbia’s Wikipedia.

    • Besides the promo material, results of the project will be presented in Niš, Beograd, Kragujevac and Novi Sad during the year of 2019.

Hopefully, we shall gather numerous interesting field data and we will have a nice time together during project activities. In the meantime, a lot of people who already had their mini Rufford grants, gathered on the website wildbalkans.com. In the future, you can read news about our projects here, see astonishing pictures of nature, plants and animals, learn something new about nature photography, nature and biodiversity conservation especially in Serbia, but also on Balkan peninsula in general. And if you also have a project that fits this description, we invite you to join us by writing a short article for wildbalkans.

Expected results

With this project, we plan on gathering important and necessary data for butterfly conservation in Serbia, and we want to present them to the scientific society, state institutions, organizations, and anybody interested in this matter.

  1. The study about Zerynthia sp. ecology will complement to what we already know about the distribution and might explain why Zerynthia cerisy is spreading towards the north. We plan on doubling the number of already collected data thanks to field research that will take place this and the following year. Hopefully, we will gather people who like field research and make them fall in love with the majestic world of butterflies. We expect our working team for butterfly research to grow even more and dive deeper into the marvelous world of insects.

  2. With digitalization of published literature as well as field research, we gathered an impressive amount of data and revised the existing list of butterflies. Until the end of our project, we shall form the Serbian Red List of Butterflies. We hope that this will help our country improve the application of the Law on Nature Protection and secure the survival of our most endangered butterfly species.

The work of Miloš Popović is cofinansed by the Ministry of education, science and technological development of Republic of Serbia (project No. 173025), while the Biologer software developement was cofinanced through the Rufford (project No. 20507-B) and the MAVA fundation (organisation Hyla, project entiteled “The Dinaric Arc Karst biodiversity conservation programme“).

AuthorsBojana Nadaždin, Bojana Matić and Miloš Popović

News on a project

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