A PROJECT by Wiltshire Wildlife Trust to bring back an almost-extinct butterfly is underway.

It hopes to reintroduce the endangered Marsh fritillary butterfly into its former stronghold in the Braydon Forest.

Reserves manager Ellie Jones said: “A change in land management is one of the biggest reasons why marsh fritillaries have suffered such catastrophic declines. They are also quite fussy about the habitat they like.They won’t tolerate hay cutting or overgrazing. Their ideal habitat structure is an uneven patchwork of short and long vegetation.”

The butterfly is one of the UK’s most prized butterfly species - but its numbers have declined catastrophically in recent decades. The trust won help from the public earlier this year to buy land next to its Emmett Hill nature reserve, to establish new breeding habitat for the butterfly.