Study

Modifying landscaped verges for conservation: New urban habitats for bees and butterflies?

  • Published source details Schwenninger H.R. & Wolf-Schwenninger K. (1998) Naturschutzorientierte Umgestaltung von Straßenbegleitgrün. Natur und Landschaft: Zeitschrift fur Naturschutz und Landschaftspflege, 73, 386-392.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Restore or maintain species-rich grassland along road/railway verges

Action Link
Butterfly and Moth Conservation

Plant parks, gardens and road verges with appropriate native species

Action Link
Butterfly and Moth Conservation
  1. Restore or maintain species-rich grassland along road/railway verges

    A replicated, site comparison study in 1992–1996 in urban road verges in Baden-Württemberg, Germany (Schwenninger & Wolf-Schwenninger 1998) reported that road verges sown with native wildflowers had a greater species richness of butterflies and day-flying moths than verges with non-native vegetation. Results were not tested for statistical significance. Over four years, eight butterfly and moth species were recorded on two verges sown with wildflowers, compared to none on verges with non-native plants. Only one species, small white Pieris rapae, occurred every year in the sown verges. Two road verges (1,100–1,500 m2, up to 5–35 m wide) on busy roads in the centre of Stuttgart were sown with annual and biennial native wildflowers including white stonecrop Sedum album, common self-heal Prunella vulgaris, greater knapweed Centaurea scabiosa and wild carrot Daucus carota. For comparison, an unspecified number of vegetated road verges that contained non-native bearberry cotoneaster Cotoneaster dammeri, scarlet firethorn Pyracantha ccoccinea and cultivated roses were also surveyed. From April–August 1992–1994 and 1996, butterflies and day-flying moths were surveyed 6–10 times/year on each verge, and plants were occasionally searched for caterpillars.

    (Summarised by: Andrew Bladon)

  2. Plant parks, gardens and road verges with appropriate native species

    A replicated, site comparison study in 1992–1996 in urban road verges in Baden-Württemberg, Germany (Schwenninger & Wolf-Schwenninger 1998) reported that road verges sown with native wildflowers had a greater species richness of butterflies and day-flying moths than verges with non-native vegetation. Results were not tested for statistical significance. Over four years, eight butterfly and moth species were recorded on two verges sown with wildflowers, compared to none on verges with non-native plants. Only one species, small white Pieris rapae, occurred every year in the sown verges. Two road verges (1,100–1,500 m2, up to 5–35 m wide) on busy roads in the centre of Stuttgart were sown with annual and biennial native wildflowers including white stonecrop Sedum album, common self-heal Prunella vulgaris, greater knapweed Centaurea scabiosa and wild carrot Daucus carota. For comparison an unspecified number of vegetated road verges that contained non-native bearberry cotoneaster Cotoneaster dammeri, scarlet firethorn Pyracantha ccoccinea and cultivated roses were also surveyed. From April–August 1992–1994 and 1996, butterflies and day-flying moths were surveyed 6–10 times/year on each verge, and plants were occasionally searched for caterpillars.

    (Summarised by: Anne-Christine Mupepele)

Output references
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