This study is one of three to correlatively analyse datasets to assess the degree of success in the delivery of Environmental Stewardship (ES) objectives. The studies are particularly relevant to ES, but do not discount the effects of earlier agri-environment schemes such as Environmentally Sensitive Areas and the Countryside Stewardship Scheme.
The aim is to evaluate how well Government funded agri-environment interventions are providing improved trajectories towards the planned objectives of the schemes.
This study used data from the UK and Wider Countryside Butterfly Monitoring Schemes (UKBMS and WCBMS respectively) to look at the impact of agri-environmental schemes on the populations of butterfly species.
Butterfly population densities were related to a number of land use variables for 1 km and 3 km buffers around the BMS transects.
The results of this report, NECR156 – Assessment of the effect of Environmental Stewardship on improving the ecological status of grassland, moorland and heath and NECR158 – Assessment of the effects of Environmental Stewardship on landscape character will contribute to a wider analysis of similar linkages between management options and ES objectives, which will be used to help formulate and implement the next Rural Development Programme for England.