1. ITV Report

Rare Essex moth makes comeback after conservation efforts

An extremely rare moth found only in Essex is making a comeback.

Their habitat is at risk of flooding. Credit: Essex Wildlife Trust.

The resurgence of the Fisher's Estuarine moth comes after seven years of work between conservation organisations in the county.

Surveys have shown they are now being found in locations outside of their normal home on Skipper's Island in the Walton backwaters.

The caterpillars' main food source is Sea Hog's fennel. Credit: Essex Wildlife Trust.

The moth is limited to where it can live based on the presence of the caterpillars' sole food plant – Sea Hog’s fennel. Conservation efforts have focused on settling the plant in areas not at risk of flooding.

The fact we’re seeing this increase is fantastic news for the future of the Fisher’s Estuarine moth in the UK.

Creating successful areas of Sea Hog’s Fennel was a vital step and now we’ve seen the moth can successfully establish in new locations.

With continued collaborative efforts, the outlook for the Fisher’s Estuarine Moth looks much brighter.

– Mark Iley, Essex Wildlife Trust