If you have an interest in any of these projects or for more information please contact the Secretary at 

Lucia limbaria (Chequered Copper) in the Adelaide Park Lands

Greg Coote’s 2020 video of symbiosis

Scientific details

Lucia limbaria – 2023 Opportunities / threats / and sighs of relief!

SA government backs down from plan to house Mounted Operations Unit in Adelaide parklands

A letter from the Hon. Joe Szakacs MP Minister dated 30th March 2023 had advised the following:
The site was proposed by SAPOL as the safest and most suitable site for the Mounted Operations Unit, due to its close proximity to the CBD, easy access, optimal environment for horses and low environmental impact.” Clearly, the Minister had received flawed advice. This park includes remnants of pre-European vegetation and, thanks to over 15 years work by Trees for Life volunteers, this park is a biodiversity hotspot, considered one of the most environmentally diverse parks in the Adelaide Park Lands.

Butterfly Conservation SA joined with the Adelaide Park Lands Association, Conservation Council SA, Nature Conservation Society of SA, Trees for Life, and many other Adelaide residents in successfully showing to the South Australian Government that a decision to relocate horses could have eliminated Chequered Copper butterflies in the Adelaide Park Lands and flattened a biological hotspot.

Also in 2023, The Herding Caterpillars VR experience was a finalist for the Adelaide Park Lands Art Prize, and Creative Director Rosina Possingham promoted this production at the FMX Conference on Animation, Effects, Games and Immersive Media in Stuttgart Germany.

Lucia limbaria 2022 International acclaim for SA’s Virtual Reality

During the SA Nature Festival Film submission in October 2022, Butterfly Conservation SA and Creative Director (Art) Rosina Possingham presented ‘Herding Caterpillars – an extended reality experience that explores the life cycle of the Chequered Copper butterfly. Based on the 2021 theatrical performance, ‘Herding Caterpillars’ is brought to life in the virtual world through a host of delightful characters.

Watch the BCSA 2022 SA Nature Film Festival submission

Virtual World Experience

Lucia limbaria 2021 Art and Science INNOVATION for families

At a May 2021 nature festival event in Tuthangga (Park 17) in Adelaide, children were shown the relationship between the Chequered Copper butterfly (Lucia limbaria), a common black ant (Iridomyrmex rufoniger), and the native Sorrell plant (Oxalis perennans)

The Chequered Copper butterfly, a common ant, and the native Sorrell plant

Lucia limbaria – the early days

Discovery of this species in the Adelaide South Parklands (Pakapakanthi (Park 16)) was very exciting.

Greg Coote’s album of images from this project

Click on this link and scroll down for the story to date
Weeding around the host plant Oxalis perennans is an ongoing task.

Project update 1 – Friends of Chequered Copper Lucia limbaria Butterfly Nov 2018
Project update 2 – Friends of Chequered Copper Lucia limbaria Butterfly Dec 2018

Project update 3 – Friends of Chequered Copper Lucia limbaria Butterfly Mar 2019
Project update 4 – Report to City of Adelaide from the Friends – 9 Sep 2019
Project update 5 – Friends of Chequered Copper Lucia limbaria Butterfly Dec 2019

Mar 2020 Victoria Park Pakapakanthi grasslands field trip
Aug 2020 Webinar during National Science Week
Oct 2020 Monitoring of the Chequered Copper
Project update 6 – Friends of Chequered Copper Lucia limbaria 16 Oct 2020

Chequered Copper Butterfly Sightings;

Other projects:

There are details of some great citizen science on our websites page here

If you are interested in any project listed below, please email 

Monarto Zoo – we are presently working with zoo staff to create a butterfly trail.

Port Stanvac remnant vegetation – until Mobil releases the site and the Government decides on what to do with the area nothing can be done about this site. However there is a largely intact patch of coastal heathland in this area which is the home to remnant plant species and insects as well as butterflies.

Torrens Island Conservation Park – we have an ongoing interest in this conservation park as it is the home of the Bitter-bush Blue butterfly Theclinesthes albocincta.