Urban Butterflies

Cabbage White Butterflies

Cabbage White Butterflies, (Pieris rapae rapae) In an urban garden

Lee and colleagues* studied butterfly diversity in South Korea and factors that were correlated with the presence or absence of butterfly species. They found that migratory species and species that had many host plants were more likely to survive in urban areas. Species that rely on specialized host plants in restricted areas such as the forest interior are most likely to be excluded. Their results reinforce those of many other studies.

Urban areas homogenize the physical environment to satisfy the needs of humans. Many of our urban areas have codes that enforce a limited and uniform landscape that may exclude many species of butterflies. Such codes are often designed to ensure that management of urban landscapes are not being neglected and property values maintained. However there is a difference between neglect (that may not be butterfly-friendly) and an alternative butterfly management landscape. Increasing urban butterfly diversity generally requires management of butterfly refuges that provide the necessary resources for butterflies. As we increasingly urbanize, more of the landscape is under intense management. Management practices can be butterfly-friendly, or butterfly exclusionary. With proper management, butterfly diversity can be enhanced in our urban areas

Lee et al. Diversity and density of butterfly communities in urban green areas: an analytical approach using GIS. Zoological Studies (2015) 54:4
DOI 10.1186/s40555-014-0090-7

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
This entry was posted in by jjneal, Endangered Species, Environment. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Urban Butterflies

  1. Pingback: Urban Butterflies | Entomo Planet

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