We have close working links with many of the major wildlife and conservation organisations and are a recognised, leading land-based college in this field. Our academic staff, all of whom have practical experience and qualifications relevant to their particular specialism, are also actively involved in the study and management of ecology, conservation and the countryside.
The College has also established close links with a range of landowners throughout the country and has unprecedented access to a wide variety of sites, so students can experience a diversity of wildlife and habitats and their management first-hand.
Supporting these areas is our own 176-hectare College Farm Estate. The farm estate has a conservation management plan. The farm operates a viable range of enterprises to service the education and teaching requirements of the courses.
The estate also provides a managed rural environment including an ancient semi-natural woodland designated as a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation. Containing a lake with reed-bed with an establishing population of threatened white-clawed crayfish, a park herd of Sika deer, a woodland shelter belt and recreated semi-natural grassland with chalk scrape habitat. A Game and Wildlife Centre resources the development of practical industry skills. Staff and students regularly monitor butterflies and birds on site, contributing to county and national surveys.
Species recorded on site include:
- Slow worms
- Common lizard
- Small blue butterfly
- Common blue butterfly
- White clawed crayfish
- Marsh tit
- Ancient woodland indicators e.g. Solomon’s seal and Ramsons