Our vision is to be a species and habitat rich campus supporting biodiversity to thrive by enhancing the quality, extent and management of green spaces across our University estate. Here are our top tips for supporting biodiversity.
Save the bees
Bees are important to preserving biodiversity as they pollinate nearly 90% of plant species and they contribute to more than 35% of the world’s food supply, but they’re under threat from varroa mites. You can help to save them by planting nectar-producing wildflowers in your backyard, or even building bee boxes for local bees. Better than that, volunteer as a beekeeper at the Guild!
Save the hedgehogs
Improve habitats and circumstances for hedgehogs by providing safe nesting sites for them to make their new home, get a hedgehog feeding station and a hedgehog highway at home. Or better still, join the University’s Hedgehog Friendly Campus Scheme.
Feed the birds
Get a bird feeding station and fill it with a bird mixture which contains plenty of flaked maize, sunflower seeds and peanut granules. Or you can hang some fat balls and don’t forget to leave them some fresh water.
Get a bird box
Bird nest boxes can provide a safe home for woodland birds to nest and rear their young. They are cheap and easy to construct and can last for years.
Don’t forget about insects
You can buy or build a ‘bug hotel’ and create a range of habitats to keep insects happy!
Plant flowers, fruit and veg
Planting flowers, fruit and veg helps to protect biodiversity and supports the wider ecosystem of your local area, they can also improve anxiety and help restore some calm.
Grow your own food
Growing your own fruit, vegetables and herbs will not only diversify your garden, but will also cut your carbon emissions significantly by providing you with an organic and local food supply. Grow some herbs yourself at home or visit the Guild’s roof garden where you can help to grow fruit, vegetables, salads and herbs which is then freely available for students and staff to consume.
Diversify your plants
Diversify your plants to improve resilience: wild flowers attract pollinators and mixed species provide natural disease control.
Use native plants
Use native plants to reduce the need to water and to attract native birds and insects.
Gardening is a great source of exercise; but if you don’t have your own garden get out in the fresh air and volunteer at the Green Guild’s gorgeous gardens. The gardens are run in conjunction with Farm Urban who house an aquaponics system and have designed and installed an urban farm showcasing the latest in sustainable growing techniques, growing healthy and resource efficient food.
Protect natural habitats
Our impact on the earth can have a devastating impact on biodiversity. Protect greenspaces on campus by keeping to walking paths, and not stepping through flowers or crops.
Climate change has devastating consequences for biodiversity so reducing your carbon footprint by walking, cycling or using public transport can help protect it. Take advantage of the range of sustainable travel and transport initiatives available for your commute.
Water is essential to biodiversity. Reducing the amount of water you use by implementing small behaviour changes can help protect vital wetlands. Check out our guide to reducing water waste.
Reduce, reuse and recycle
Recycling lessens pollution by decreasing energy, electricity, and water consumption and the need for landfills.
Farmers play a key role in conserving biodiversity. Buying from small local farmers or farmers markets supports agricultural efforts to conserve biodiversity while also financially supporting local farmers. Check out the University’s Farmer’s Market, every Second Thursday of the month on University Square.
Visit your local botanical garden
Botanical gardens are great for biodiversity conservation, as scientists can store, study and grow plants in their native habitats. You can visit the University’s very own Ness Botanic Gardens and you can donate to help them continue to protect and promote biodiversity.
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