An Austrian biologist has criticised restrictive lawnmowing and claimed that no one should be taken aback by a decline in butterfly biodiversity.
Together with moths and the numerous bee species, butterflies help to keep ecosystems stable with their engaged pollination efforts.
Dr Andrea Grill has warned that the insects would suffer from the restrictive approach to cutting back meadows as exhibited by residents and city councils’ gardening departments.
Andrea, 48, explained: “A third of the butterflies that exist in Austria are eating grass.”
Speaking to broadcaster ORF, the renowned researcher and author criticised: “We are throwing away the grass. Afterwards, everyone is surprised that there aren’t any butterflies around here.”
The award-winning writer, who has also penned novels for adults, said she decided to abstain from taking an alarmist stance in “Bio-Diversi-Was?”
The scientist argued: “I have to remain optimistic when I address children.”
She emphasised: “There haven’t been just negative developments. Our rivers and lakes are cleaner than they used to be. And in cities, biodiversity is increasing.”
Andrea decided to ‘interview’ 65 animals for her latest release.
The Vienna-based author said: “I wanted to create a book that is as lively as possible. If the texts were like those you find in an encyclopedia, readers would get bored quickly.”
Andrea’s criticism of drastic lawnmowing comes just days after council officials in Vienna announced their decision to allow the grass on city-owned premises to grow to seven to 10 centimetres (2.8 to 3.9 inches).
Previously, the grass was cut much sooner. The decision is a reaction to the engagement of an initiative formed by eco-minded tenants of a city-administered housing estate in the district of Hietzing.
There are around 4,000 butterfly species in Austria, according to the Naturschutzbund Austria, an environmental organisation which warns that most domestic butterfly types are in decline.
The Smithsonian – a renowned American research centre – reports that there are around 17,500 species of butterflies globally.