13 Facts on Biodiversity

What is Biodiversity

Biological diversity or biodiversity is the term used to describe the range of living things with which we share the planet.

The conservation of biodiversity is not only about looking after our rare species and their habitats, it is about the conservation of the complete variety of life. This involves managing the full range of our animals and plants, even the common ones, and caring for the places where they live.

The term biodiversity only became significant when, at the 1991 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, the Biodiversity Convention was signed by the UK Government and representatives of more than 150 other countries. The Convention requires all signatories to follow a number of courses that will ensure the continued existence of present biodiversity and, where possible, to work towards the enhancement of biodiversity for the future.

The Earth Summit led to the publication of a UK Action Plan for Biodiversity and the formation of an Action Plan Steering Group. A Northern Ireland Biodiversity Group was set up and, in 2001, it produced the ‘Recommendations to Government for a Biodiversity Strategy for Northern Ireland’.
Ulster Wildlife Trust

Why is biodiversity in danger?

Species losses are a natural part of evolution but current losses exceed by hundreds of times, those recorded in the fossil record. This increased rate of extinction is caused solely by human activities. Humans have been responsible for the loss of habitat, the introduction of alien species and the fragmentation of natural areas. Losses of individual species and the range of species in an area are associated with such activities as overgrazing, excessive chemical use and increasing levels of greenhouse gas.

Why should we conserve biodiversity?

The range of animals and plants living in an area is a key indicator of environmental health. Where an area is subjected to environmental stress (e.g. by pollution), the number of species which live there will fall (although the total amount of wildlife may actually go up, as certain species survive and thrive).

Biodiversity is thus inextricably linked to human health and welfare. It is an issue of pure self interest to conserve biodiversity – ‘if its good enough for wildlife, its good enough for me!’

The reasons why we should protect biodiversity are -:
Ulster Wildlife Trust

Benefits to human society

Natural biological processes involving a mixture of wild species protect human life. For example, plankton in the oceans and trees on land are the main sources of the oxygen that we breathe as well as being the disposal system for the excess carbon dioxide we produce.
We currently depend on highly specialised varieties of a tiny number of species for our food. Whenever problems arise with disease or crop failure we usually search for the solution in wild populations.
We do not know enough to recognise the value of wild species as sources of medicines. Many wild species have, in the past, provided irreplaceable drugs – who knows which species hold the cure for cancer and other diseases?

Economic Value

Recent advances in biotechnology have begun to indicate the almost inestimable value of the genetic material in plants and animals in every aspect of the commercial world.
Maintenance of natural wild populations of plants and animals is essential to the fishing industry and to many aspects of agriculture.
Without our biodiversity would we have a tourist industry? Would people come to see a countryside where only dark green grass grew in fields surrounded by fences and not hedges?

Ulster Wildlife Trust Moral and aesthetic

Wildlife enriches our lives.
We should hand on to the next generation an environment no less rich than the one we ourselves inherited.
Our cultural heritage is closely allied to our landscape and wildlife. Poets, painters and composers have been inspired by our natural heritage.


People now hold the power to determine whether wildlife lives o dies – but with this power comes responsibility.
Species, which have evolved over millions of years to live in a particular way in a particular place may be lost quickly. They cannot be recreated.
Biodiversity cannot be regained ‘overnight’.



The marsh fritillary is a strikingly patterned, yellow, brown and orange butterfly. It is a medium-sized, rather weak-flying species on the wing in late May and June and overwintering in its larval (caterpillar) state.

In late summer, the small black caterpillars weave a communal web where they shelter and foray to eat leaves of the devil’s-bit scabious. In winter, they spin a tough web at the base of plants, emerging in the spring to feed again before pupating in May and emerging as adults in June.


The marsh fritillary is confined to discrete areas of flower-rich damp grassland in marshes, cot-over bogs and in sand-dune systems, and is dependant on the presence of devil’s-bit scabious (Succisa pratensis) as its main food-plant. Some dead grass or leaf litter is important for the caterpillars to bask on.


Despite its protection under domestic and European legislation, it is extinct in many European countries and it has joined the growing list of Northern Ireland’s endangered species. Until recently it could still be found in a scattering of locations through the south-east and middle of Northern Ireland, but there may now only be about ten principal sites remaining. Its decline has been attributed to a combination of factors such as drainage, agricultural reclamation, peat cutting, habitat neglect and progression to woodland.

Legal Protection

Wildlife (Northern Ireland) Order 1985 (Schedule 5 and 7)
Conservation (Natural Habitats etc.) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1995 (Annex II)
Nature Conservation and Amenity Lands (Northern Ireland) Order 1984

Policy Protection

The marsh fritillary has been identified by the UK Biodiversity group as a Priority Species. A Biodiversity Action Plan has been written which aims to protect and increase populations of this butterfly across the UK.

A Marsh Fritillary Action Plan Group was established in 2003 to co-ordinate action within Northern Ireland, and between Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and Great Britain.

NI Biodiversity Strategy

Action Plans?

UWT Action for the Marsh Fritillary

It has been recorded at three Ulster Wildlife Trust nature reserves, at the Umbra, Slievenacloy and Inishargy Bog.
Inishargy Bog on the Ards peninsula holds one of Northern Ireland’s largest and most stable colonies, with almost 100 larval clusters recorded in 1999, reflected in a good year for adults at the site in the following year.

The Ulster Wildlife Trust has managed this reserve for the benefit of these insects for more than 15 years, and management has involved removing invasive scrub and controlling bracken control, and undertaking regular monitoring of the butterflies and larvae. However, the site continues to dry out due to agricultural drainage on adjacent land, leading to encroachment onto the bog by birch, willow, bramble, rush and bracken. The Trust is maintaining and expanding the conditions that create the ideal habitat for the marsh fritillary by excavating shallow scrapes down to the level of the water table, and clearing invasive vegetation from the margins of the better quality habitat. Subject to funding, the Trust will be seeking to acquire a further 5 ha of adjacent land which is rapidly losing its fritillaries due to lack of appropriate management.
The Ulster Wildlife Trust is committed to securing this vulnerable population of butterflies, and will continue to campaign for the preservation and management of similar sites throughout Northern Ireland.
Bogs are one of the Trust’s focal habitats and as such action taken by the Trust aims to protect and enhance this habitat to make a positive impact on insects such as the marsh fritillary.
The Trust encourages and advises landowners to manage their land for biodiversity through the Wildlife Areas Scheme. There are currently 77 Scheme members.
The Trust’s education programme aims to raise awareness of the marsh fritillary to help ensure its protection.

What You Can Do!

If you come across this butterfly, please help us record its local distribution by contacting the Trust to provide details on its exact location and the type of habitat where it was recorded. Please record an accurate description of the insect, preferably accompanied by a photograph.
Landowners with suitable habitat on their land should contact the Trust for advice on how to manage their land for the benefit of the marsh fritillary butterflies.
Volunteers can help at the regular marsh fritillary counts. Contact the Ulster Wildlife Trust for details.

For further details on these and other endangered or threatened species, visit the National Biodiversity Network web site, the Ulster Museum website or the Biodiversity Action Plan website.



This fungus belongs to an attractive group of fungi called the waxcaps, which are often very brightly-coloured. They are typically associated with unimproved grassland and are in decline throughout Europe.

Usually appearing between August and October, the pink meadow cap is a soft pink colour, conical in shape with a pointed tip. Its stem is white or pinkish in colour and can be up to 10 cm tall.


The pink meadow cap is confined to unimproved grassland on lawns, meadows, pastures and woodland margins. Since 1990, it has been recorded on 22 sites throughout N. Ireland.


Historic changes in the population of this species are poorly recorded and understood. However, the threat to the fungus may come from agricultural improvements such as application of fertilisers or from changing methods of grassland management and the loss of grazing, leading to the development of rank vegetation and the invasion of scrub.

Legal Protection

Pink meadow cap is not afforded specific protection in Northern Ireland.

Policy Protection

The pink meadow cap has been identified in the UK Biodiversity Strategy as a Priority Species. A Biodiversity Action Plan has been written which aims to protect and increase populations of this fungus across the UK.

NI Biodiversity Strategy

This fungus is listed as “vulnerable” in the British Red Data Books

Action Plans?

Reserve management. Pink meadow cap fungus has been recorded on the Trust’s reserves at Lagan Meadows and Glendun.
The unimproved grassland habitat of the fungus at Lagan Meadows and Glendun is managed using traditional agriculture techniques of grazing with cattle without the addition of chemicals or fertilisers.
The Trust also manages a number of other unimproved grassland reserves, such as Slievenacloy, which are important sites for a number of other waxcap species.
Focal Habitats. Unimproved grassland is one of the Trust’s focal habitats and we aim to protect and enhance this habitat to ensure a positive impact on pink meadow cap populations.
Advice to Landowners. The Trust encourages and advises landowners to manage their land for biodiversity through the Wildlife Areas Scheme. There are currently 77 Scheme members, a number of whom own areas of unimproved grassland.
The Trust’s education programme aims to raise awareness of the pink meadow cap fungus in order to help to ensure its protection.

UWT action for pink meadow cap fungus

What You Can Do!

If you come across this fungus, please do not pick it. Record its description, preferably accompanied by a photograph, and contact the Trust with details of the exact location and the type of habitat in which it was found. This will help us gather the information needed to better understand its distribution.

Landowners with unimproved grassland on their land should contact the Trust for advice on how to graze or mow for the benefit of the fungus.

For further details on these and other endangered or threatened species, visit the National Biodiversity Network web site, the Ulster Museum website or the Biodiversity Action Plan website.

Bog Meadows Reserve – All You need to know


Grid Ref: J 312 726 OS 1:50,000 sheet 15

The 19 ha (47 acre) Bog Meadows nature reserve lies close to the heart of Belfast city, adjacent to the M1, Milltown Cemetery and St. Louise’s College. It is made up of wetland, meadow and woodland habitats. The wheelchair-friendly reserve is accessible via Milltown Row, marked by a Brown and White Tourist sign on the Falls Road.


The Bog Meadows once covered an area of about 400 acres of the floodplain of the Blackstaff River. This was lush farmland, used for hay-making and grazing in summer and flooded in winter providing a haven for wildlife, such as corncrake. However, the expansion of Belfast in the 19th Century saw increasing encroachment by housing and other developments, whilst construction of the motorway in the 1960s, and the culverting of the river, stopped flooding and enabled large-scale infilling.

A local group, ‘Friends of The Bog Meadows’, who later became a branch of the Ulster Wildlife Trust, campaigned for many years for the protection of the Meadows. Grant aid from the EU Special Support Programme for Peace and Reconciliation, and assistance from Rivers Agency and Environment and Heritage Service, led to the acquisition of the site by the Ulster Wildlife Trust, and to its development as a nature reserve.


The main management regime on the reserve involves ensuring that the grassland and the wetlands do not become overgrown. Whilst the grass is currently managed using mowers, the Trust is pursuing grazing as the ideal method for its management.

The reserve is accessible to visitors, with a network of paths, bridges, stiles and signs. There is extensive Disabled Visitor Access.


The reserve is made up of a number of different habitats including open water, marsh, grassland and a small amount of woodland. Each area is home to different bird species.


The ponds are ideal for greylag goose, little grebe, mute swan, mallard, teal, tufted duck, pochard, coot, moorhen, black-headed gull and grey wagtail, whilst the marshy areas provide habitat for grey heron, water rail, snipe, reed bunting and stonechat.

These birds are joined by sedge and grasshopper warbler during the summer. Bird species found in the drier grassland areas include lapwing, skylark, meadow pipit, pied wagtail, mistle thrush and linnet.

The open water and ditches are ideal habitat for plants such as branched bur-reed, common and ivy-leaved duckweed, water starwort, water cress, fool’s watercress and brooklime. Horsetail, reedmace, reed canary-grass, floating sweet-grass, soft rush, sharp-flowered rush, brown sedge, marsh marigold, wild angelica, lesser spearwort, water mint, tufted hair-grass, marsh willowherb, marsh bedstraw, marsh ragwort and celery-leaved buttercup are found in the marshy areas. In the drier grassland visitors may see cuckoo flower, star, glaucous and hairy sedges, knapweed, common spotted orchid, meadowsweet, cat’s-ear, autumn hawkbit, meadow vetchling, bird’s-foot trefoil, ragged robin, meadow buttercup, common sorrel and ragwort.

Irish Hare – Lepus Timidus Hibernicus Preview of Specie

The Irish Hare is a creature that has particular resonance with Ulster Wildlife Trust members. As an endemic subspecies of the Mountain or Blue Hare, it symbolises the special nature of our wildlife in Ireland. Originally depicted in the Trust logo, it still features in the name and masthead of our newsletter.

The Irish hare is a medium sized plant-eater (herbivore), measuring up to 50cm long, and weighing between 2.5-4kg. It has a russet brown coat, long ears with black tips and eyes set high in the head, giving a wide field of view. The animal has powerful back legs, longer than the forelegs, and Irish Hares may reach speeds of up to 30 mph and can jump heights of around 2m.

It is considerably bigger than the rabbit, and can easily be distinguished by its loping run over long distances, as opposed to the furious headlong dash of the rabbit. Slightly more difficult to distinguish from the brown hare, it can be identified chiefly by its white tail, shorter ears and more russet coat.


Irish Hares feed mainly on a variety of grasses, but depending on the habitat, sedges, shrubs such as heather, thyme, bilberry and even shoots from certain trees may play an important part in their diet. Hares will also venture onto the foreshore to feed on sea lettuce and other seaweeds.

They feed mostly at night, resting during daylight hours in a scraped or nibbled hollow or “form”, although there are records of hares using rabbit burrows, crevices in rock and other shelters for refuge or lie-up sites.

The Irish Hare is found from seashore to hilltop, mainly in open country. It occupies many different habitats: unimproved and semi-improved pasture, expanding into adjacent improved pasture; upland habitats including heather-dominated heath and bogs; coastal habitats including dunes, coastal strips and seashore. This species can also occur on golf courses and airfields.

Hares seem to avoid areas of improved grassland dominated by rye-grass species.


Historically widespread and common throughout Ireland, the Irish hare has undergone substantial decline in the last 10-20 years. Estimates indicate that the present Northern Ireland population may be as low as 8250. Population levels may have fallen to critical levels in some areas. Small populations of the introduced brown hare Lepus europaeus (L.) are believed to be in Northern Ireland, but it is not clear if these are having a negative effect on the native Irish hare.

The Hares’ problems mostly involve habitat, food and shelter loss. They need a varied diet of herbs and grasses, low levels of disturbance and adequate shelter for lying up during the day. Intensification of agriculture has pinched Hare distribution to the absolute margins, and in the uplands, expansion of sheep grazing has added to the Hares’ woes.

On top of all this, the Irish hare is still a quarry species for hunting, and can be legally coursed with dogs. While possibly a minor element in the species’ long term decline, this may prove to be the final straw for some of the more isolated populations.

Other threats include:

· Increased levels of predation particularly from foxes, crows and magpies especially affecting leverets.
· Over-hunting due to illegal coursing and lamping.
· Increased mortality on roads due to increases in traffic volume and speed.

Legal Protection

The Irish Hare is a quarry species and can only be hunted or shot between 12th August and 31st January. Controls governing Hare-coursing include the use of muzzles on dogs.
In October 2003, the Minister for the Environment refused to issue a permit for trapping of hares, and instigated a review of the Wildlife (NI) Order 1985 that would include the possibility of scheduling the Irish hare for protection.

Policy Protection

The Irish hare is listed in Annex V (a) of the EU Directive 92/43/EEC Habitats Directive, which determines that a species may be exploited provided that this is compatible with maintenance at a favourable conservation status.
It is also listed as a Priority Species in the Northern Ireland Biodiversity Strategy. A Species Action Plan has been drawn up and is being implemented. In the Irish Red Data book it is listed as internationally important.

Action Plans?

A Species Action Plan has been developed for the Irish hare, and is being led by the Ulster Wildlife Trust. This is a blueprint for focussed action by statutory agencies working within their remit to legislate, encourage survey and research and promote knowledge about the Irish hare.
Targets are ambitious, and include maintenance of the existing population, with a demonstrated increase showing by 2005, doubling the present population by 2010 and maintaining and increasing both the area and quality of suitable habitat. Surveys are being carried out at present to determine the current population figures, geographic range and principal ecological factors at the root of the decline. This information will be used to ensure that targeted work can be carried out to turn the decline around over the next few years.
Agri-environment Schemes for farmers, such as Environmental Sensitive Areas (ESAs) and the Countryside Management Scheme (CMS) can make an important contribution to the maintenance and enhancement of suitable hare habitat.
Public awareness has been raised through development of leaflets, Irish hare features at agricultural shows, and by the holding of a conference in November 2003 dedicated to sharing knowledge of the hare, its threats and its ecology.

What You Can Do!

If you see an Irish hare, contact the Ulster Wildlife Trust and let us know when and where you saw it, preferably including a six figure grid reference.

If you are a landowner or farmer, the following activities would be beneficial to the Irish hare.
· Maintain varied grass species in pasture
· Reduce dominance of ryegrass species (Lolium spp.)
· Defer cutting of grass – to reduce leveret mortality
· Reduce stocking levels of livestock; notably cattle and sheep
· Reduce application of Nitrogen based fertilisers that stimulate competitive grasses.
· Manage hedgerows for biodiversity
· Maintain habitat variety, with plenty of cover.

For further details on these and other endangered or threatened species, visit the National Biodiversity Network website, the Ulster Museum website or the Biodiversity Action Plan website.

Basking Shark, Cetorhinus Maximus – Specie Description

The basking shark is the second largest fish in the world and the largest that can be found in UK waters. Yet, despite its size, it presents no threat to humans as it feeds only on tiny animal plankton.

In the UK, the basking shark has been recorded mainly in surface waters from April to September, when it is usually immature females that are seen. The shark is thought to be migratory with seasonal population movements inshore to feed on high levels of plankton near ‘tidal fronts’ in coastal areas. They are then thought to disperse offshore to the north-east Atlantic.

The winter distribution and the location of pregnant females throughout the year remains unknown, but is believed that they move to deep water. There has been considerable variation in the numbers of sightings reported this century and in numbers taken by north-east Atlantic fisheries, indicating long-term, perhaps cyclical, changes in summer distribution patterns.

The life cycle of the basking shark is poorly understood. The only litter ever recorded in UK waters was of six young measuring from 1.5 to 1.7 m long, which is larger than any other known shark. Estimates of the development of the sharks suggest that males reach maturity at 12 years old, growing to up to 5.6m in length, whilst females normally grow to 8-10m at around 20 years of age. The gestation period for the sharks is thought to be 1-3 years, but how long they live is unknown.


Although widely distributed in both hemispheres, basking sharks are most regularly recorded in coastal areas of the UK where tidal fronts produce high levels of zooplankton, such as off the west coast of Scotland and the central Irish Sea area.

Relatively large numbers of sharks are seen feeding, or ‘basking’, in shallow waters during the summer months. It has often been assumed that the absence of such surface sightings means no sharks are present, but it may be that they are feeding in deeper water.

Although sightings have regularly been made in UK and Irish territorial waters, no reliable population estimates are available because it is difficult to relate surface sightings to actual population size.

Habitat constraints and food availability are likely to be important factors regulating distribution and population size.


One of the main threats to the basking shark is our lack of knowledge about the species – where they go in winter, and their courtship and breeding behaviour etc.

Accidental capture in fishing nets is a potential threat to shark populations, although few are now caught commercially. Liver oil was traditionally the main product derived from basking sharks, but market prices are currently very low. Shark fins are still a valuable commodity in the Far East, as are meat and cartilage.

Legal Protection

In Great Britain, the basking shark is protected under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, which makes the deliberate killing of basking sharks an offence.

There is currently no protection for basking sharks in Northern Ireland waters, but the UK Biodiversity Action Plan proposes to extend the protection provided in GB waters to Northern Ireland.

Website: www.baskingshark.org.uk

Policy Protection

The Bern Convention protects the shark within the territorial waters of the Isle of Man and Guernsey, in the Mediterranean under the Bern Convention, the Barcelona Convention (unratified), and in US Atlantic waters.

Ratification of the Barcelona Convention and removal of the EU reservation on the Bern Convention could improve the status of the population visiting UK waters, if the Mediterranean and Atlantic populations are not separate.

The basking shark is listed as Vulnerable IUCN Red List.

Action Plans?

The UK Biodiversity Action Plan for Basking Sharks includes the following objectives:

Listing the species on Appendix II of the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna (CITES) to enable monitoring and management of fisheries and international trade.

Develop and implement a code of conduct to reduce levels of harassment, in collaboration with scientists engaged in research on this species.
Consider opportunities for the protection of the species within European waters through a listing on Appendix II of both the Bern Convention and the Bonn Convention.
Develop and publish a code of conduct regarding interactions with basking sharks to reduce levels of harassment.
Commission research into the life cycle of this poorly understood species.
Quantify and monitor population size, structure, dynamics and movement patterns and range of individuals occurring in UK waters.
Improve long-term studies to: assess scientifically the population trends; elucidate migration and over-wintering areas which may identify locations where basking sharks mate and the pregnant females reside; and minimise unnatural mortality in these areas. Genetic studies may help determine the degree of mixing between populations.

Ulster Wildlife Trust action for the Basking Shark

Through The Wildlife Trusts UK marine programme, the Ulster Wildlife Trust is undertaking a number of steps to help protect basking sharks and their marine environment.
This work includes supporting research and survey work around the UK, including around Northern Ireland, the training of volunteers in basking shark identification and photo-identification projects, and lobbying for greater protection for these animals.
The Trust’s education programme aims to raise awareness of the basking shark in order to help to ensure its protection.

What You Can Do!

Become involved in the basking shark sighting and recording schemes, and photo-identification schemes to help us learn more about these poorly understood animals.
Report any sightings to the Ulster Wildlife Trust, including providing a photograph were possible.
Write to your MP / MLA and the Minister for the Environment, asking for greater protection for basking sharks in Northern Ireland waters.
Contact your local MP / MLA and the Minister for the Environment requesting that the basking shark should be listed in Appendix II of the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna (CITES)
Follow the code of conduct on how to behave when near basking sharks, to avoid disturbing or injuring them. For more details contact the Ulster Wildlife Trust.

Benefits of Wildlife Conservation Projects Ulster Wildlife Trust Example

The Landfill Tax Credit Grant Scheme

Since 1997, the Ulster Wildlife Trust has enabled many community groups, societies, associations and environmental organisations to undertake environmental projects by providing funding through the Landfill Tax Credit Scheme.

Landfill Tax is a ‘green’ tax. It aims to reduce dependency on landfilling as a way of dealing with waste by taxing waste and therefore making environmentally sustainable alternatives, such as recycling, more viable. An added bonus of the tax, is that a small amount of the tax can be reclaimed to be contributed to an environmental organisation, where it must be spent on environmental projects to offset some of the adverse environmental impacts of landfilling.

Projects, which include recycling, environmental education and habitat creation, must comply with the scheme.

This Ulster Wildlife Trust has supported this grant scheme since it started, helping us attain the key objective of protecting habitat and biodiversity by helping reduce the amount of potential pollutants going into landfill thereby diminishing damage to air, soil, rivers and lakes.

Conservative Jobs Case Studies: Ulster Wildlife Trust Job Opportunities

The Ulster Wildlife Trust offers a number paid and unpaid positions for people committed to doing something practical to help their local environment. Unpaid opportunities include weekend volunteer activities on nature reserves and work experience placements, as well as longer term volunteer posts.

To support our work with volunteers, please make a secure donation now. This work is vital for the Trust in seeking an Ulster rich in wildlife – and gives many people important skills and experience in conservation, administration and education.
Ulster Wildlife Trust

As well as the posts listed on the web site volunteer opportunities are available in a number of other areas including gardening, reserve gardening, tree seed collection and helping at events.

Before we do a profound plunge into the preservation work market, we should rapidly address what we characterize as a protection work?

For Conservation Careers, a protection work is any job where your exercises help the preservation or upgrade of untamed life.

This incorporates occupations which straightforwardly advantage untamed life preservation like a Project Officer for a marine secured region in Fiji. It likewise incorporates jobs which in a roundabout way advantage biodiversity preservation endeavors, for example, a Communications Manager job, whose work is it to raise the profile of a protection association, so that staff, for example, their Project Officer can will work securing that Fijian marine hold.

In the event that the job helps preservation endeavors, it’s a protection work.

Preservation Career Stories and Careers Advice

We’ve addressed more than 400 expert protectionists and shared their profession stories, exhortation, tips and significantly more in our vocation guidance article and in our Conservation Careers web recording. These incorporate preservation pioneers, for example,

RSPB Chief Executive | Dr Mike Clark

WWF Director General | Dr Marco Lambertini

BirdLife International Chief Executive Officer | Patricia Zurita

ZSL Director General | Dominic Jermey OBE

IUCN Director General | Julia Marton-Lefèvre

Cambridge University Chair of Conservation Biology | Professor Bill Sutherland

On the off chance that you need to understand what it resembles to work in various protection occupations, and how you can emulate their example, you can look through our preservation vocations guidance chronicles, and buy in to our ordinary digital recording on iTunes, Spotify or Stitcher.

Youth Education and Wildlife Opportunities

As part of our aim to help everyone to recognise the importance of a healthy environment, the Ulster Wildlife Trust delivers a range of youth and education programmes.
Ulster Wildlife Trust

Our education and youth activities help young people develop an understanding of the environment, focusing on conservation of local habitats and wildlife and on our responsibilities as individuals and communities. Activities normally last around two hours, but individual needs are catered for depending on age, ability and the proposed venue. All programmes include ice-breaker activities, scene-setting talks, active and reflective activities and interactive games.

The Trust operates a Child Welfare and Safety Policy, ensuring that all group activities are adequately supervised by an appropriate number of fully trained and vetted Trust staff and group leaders.

Site-based activities are delivered at the Trust’s head office, the Ulster Wildlife Centre in Crossgar, at Delamont Country Park and at the Bog Meadows nature reserve in Belfast and other Trust reserves.

Mobile education programmes include a travelling exhibition called the Wildlife Wagon as well as Walk on the Wildside which is delivered in school or community grounds, local parks, or in the case of Marine Walk on the Wildside, at suitable shoreline locations. Schools in partner areas can also be visited by the Community Environmental Education Programme.

Other activities, programmes or services available include:

Walk on the Wildside
Wild About Waste
Environment, Food and Farming – UWT at Greenmount
Delamont Country Park
Community Environmental Education Programme (CEEP)
Wildlife Watch
Youth Action Projects