Straight from the Horse's Heart

by Nanticha Ocharoenchai as published on Mongabay

A new study suggests that returning Wild horses to grasslands in Czech Republic could increase populations of some threatened butterfly species.

Grazing Exmoor ponies by Martin Konvička.

In the Czech Republic, horses have become the knights in shining armor. A study published in the Journal for Nature Conservation suggests that returning wild horses to grasslands in Podyjí National Park could help boost the numbers of several threatened butterfly species.

In 2017, wildlife organizations laid out their plan to introduce Exmoor ponies (Equus ferus caballus) to the dry, temperate grasslands of Podyjí along the Czech border with Austria. They aimed to “rewild” the region and restore natural ecosystems by allowing the land and its native species to develop free from human influence.

A Glanville fritillary (Melitaea cinxia), one of the species in the study. Image by Gilles San Martin via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 2.0) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)].
A Glanville fritillary (Melitaea cinxia), one of the species in the study. Image by Gilles San Martin via

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