FSC | Field Studies Council

Field Studies Council: Bringing Environmental Understanding to All

Introduction to Butterflies

  • Location: London
  • Tutor: Martin Harvey
  • Date: Saturday 22 July 2017
  • Times: 10:00 - 16:00
  • Level: Open for Everyone
  • Age Range: Adult

This course is now historical and therefore no bookings can be taken. Explore our current programme of courses here

Course Details

Butterflies are beautiful and fascinating creatures, and good indicators of the health of the environment. Around 30 species are resident in London, with others turning up as occasional migrants. This course provides an introduction to butterfly natural history, identification and conservation, using a mix of indoor activities and presentations, plus fieldwork observing butterflies in the varied habitats at Bushy Park. The course will help you understand how butterflies use their habitats, and how you can find and identify them. We will also look at the opportunities for conserving butterflies in gardens and parks, and how to get involved with recording and monitoring them. Butterflies are an approachable and popular group, and anyone can play a role in studying and conserving them – this course will help you develop the skills and knowledge needed to enjoy watching and recording butterflies.

By the end of this course participants will:

  • Be more familiar with the butterflies found in the London area
  • Understand what resources they require and the most important habitats for them
  • Know how to find and identify butterflies in the field
  • Be able to carry out recording and monitoring of butterflies
  • Know what can be done to help conserve butterfly population

Course fee includes a copy of the FSC fold out chart: Butterflies of Britain ID guide


Martin Harvey tutors regularly for FSC. He is an ecologist specialising in insect conservation, and also works for the Biological Records Centre, helping to support a range of national recording schemes.


  • 0930 Registration
  • 1000 Welcome, Health and Safety & Introduction
  • 1020 Presentation - butterfly natural history, finding and recognising butterflies
  • 1100 Field session - exploring habitats, finding and recognising butterflies in practice
  • 1230 Lunch
  • 1330 Field session - recording and monitoring butterflies, conservation of butterflies and their habitats
  • 1530 Summary - a chance to ask questions
  • 1550 Taking your interest further and Course Reviews
  • 1600 Course finishes

What to bring

  • Lunch and plenty to drink
  • Suitable clothing & footwear, waterproofs or sun cream as appropriate!
  • Notebook and pencil
  • Small bag to carry personal items

If you have them:

  • Binoculars (small, close-focusing)
  • Insect net
  • Butterfly field guide
  • Digital camera

Health and Safety

  • There will be a member of staff with first aid training and access to a first aid kit on site.
  • If you have special medical requirements please let us know as soon as possible so we can plan the course.
  • Please be aware that this is a Deer Park, and there can be ticks. Please consider wearing long sleeved tops and trousers, even if the weather is nice, and bring insect repellent.

Meeting point / Location

The Stockyard, Bushy Park.

FSC in Bushy Park

FSC have been working in partnership with The Royal Parks to deliver courses since 2011. In Bushy Park, our education Centre has two classrooms, toilet facilities, a small kitchen and office space. Alongside this is an area of the Park for education use, not open to members of the public. With two large meadows and grassland areas, woodland areas and three ponds, this is an exciting and inspiring space to discover more about the Park.

Located near Hampton Court Palace, Bushy Park's mixture of woods, gardens, ponds and grassland makes it a fantastic place to enjoy wildlife with roaming herds of Red and Fallow Deer. The park is also home to the famous Chestnut Avenue, a formal Baroque water garden and the beautiful Diana Fountain.


Further Information

Bushy Park Directions

This course is now historical and therefore no bookings can be taken.

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