The stag beetle is a globally threatened species. Its distribution has contracted in the last 40 years, although it is still locally common in a number of ‘hotspots’ such as the New Forest, the Thames Valley, around north-east Essex and, somewhat surprisingly, London.
It is believed that the destruction of its key habitat – dead wood – through the ‘tidying-up’ of woodlands, parks and gardens is the prime reason for its decline, although in urban areas the impacts of traffic, feet, cats and other predators are also significant.
It is important to hold an up-to-date and accurate assessment of where stag beetles are in London. London Wildlife Trust is building on stag beetle records in the capital.
Your sightings and survey results not only help to ensure that we keep an updated record of their distribution, but will also help us in the research to ascertain why they are present in some parts of London and not others.