"Once abundant throughout the Pacific Northwest, Oregon silverspot butterflies have dwindled because of habitat loss and extended drought. Zookeepers have been lending the species a hand."
"For a faltering species, hope comes in the form of 450 flitting butterflies.
Researchers from the Oregon Zoo in Portland released hundreds of captive-bred silverspot butterflies to Mount Hebo last week. Conservationists hope to establish self-sustaining populations of the species, which has been threatened by habitat destruction and drought in recent years.
'It was the perfect time of year to be out there, right in the middle of the flight season,' said Karen Lewis, a conservation researcher at the Oregon Zoo, in a statement. 'Adult silverspots were flying all around us and flitting across the meadows.'"