Field Ecology Course Programme

These courses are being delivered as part of Avon Wildlife Trust’s Field Ecology Programme for 2017, and are aimed at students, practising ecologists, conservation volunteers and anyone who wishes to further their knowledge in natural history and biological recording.

Each course will provide hands on experience which will aid in developing identification skills that are essential to field studies. Our tutors are all passionate about their subjects, and have a great range of knowledge and experience to share. 

The courses will provide a thorough introduction to each group’s biology, ecology and diversity within the Bristol area. References and help with understanding relevant literature, and practical activities teaching basic field survey techniques will also be covered. Some of our courses will include field trips to local sites of interest. These courses will aid participants in forming a strong foundation of understanding to take on to further study.

The courses will be delivered at our Feed Bristol project, which is a 6 acre community food growing hub and native wildflower nursery in Stapleton. This is an education and community enterprise centre which champions conservation and ecology in a food growing setting.

Feed Bristol also hosts a range of courses delivered by other organisations and special events throughout the year. For more information and booking details check out Feed Bristol's Facebook events page.

Get a 10% discount if you book two or more courses, simply call to book: 0117 917 7270.


British butterflies 

Sat 8 and Sun 9 July 2017

Come and explore the colourful world of some of Britain’s most spectacular insects. This course covers butterfly identification, ecology including life cycle, and conservation. It will help you to identify many of our native butterfly species, for example how to tell the difference between similar species such as the holly blue and the common blue.

Introduction to British Mammals

Sat 15 and Sun 16 July 2017

The course will provide an overview of British mammals and then cover the following in greater detail:

• Dormice and other small woodland mammals
• Riparian mammals (otters, water voles and mink)
• Simple survey methods
• Mammal tracks and signs
• A field visit to the Frome at Snuff Mills
• An introduction to recording
• Identifying small mammal remains from owl pellets

Badger (c) Andrew Mason

Wildflower Identification

Sat 22 and Sun 23 July 2017

A wonderfully diverse world of wild flowers surrounds us, yet their names and fascinating characteristics remain a mystery to many of us. Learning to identify our native flora gives new pleasures and an understanding of your environment every time you step outside. It is also the first step for many seeking careers in the environmental sector.

Bristol Bats

Sat 29 and Sun 30 July 2017

This introduction to British bats will be aimed at people with a general interest in bat ecology as well as environmental or land management professionals who seek a more thorough understanding of survey techniques and management practices to benefit bats.

Pipistrelle bat (c) Amy Lewis 

Introduction to British Moths

Sat 12 and Sun 13August 2017

Most people are familiar with the dozen or so species of common butterflies that feed in our gardens, but how many of us are aware that the average suburban garden plays host to more than four hundred species of moths? 

Aquatic and wetland plants

Fri 25 to Sun 27 August 2017

This course is designed for people with a reasonable grounding in plant identification and is intended to provide guidance in the identification of some of the critical aquatic and wetland plant groups, such as wetland-dependent Carex species, Callitriche, Potamogeton, Ranunculus subgenus Batrachium and non-flowering plants of a wide range of species, as well as some bryophytes and macro-algae.

Introduction to Aquatic Invertebrates

Fri 8 to Sun 10 September 2017

This three day course in freshwater aquatic invertebrates can only be a sampler into a broad subject. Key points in this course are experience in using standard field equipment, differences between flowing and still waters, how to discern key parts of the habitat, using keys to groups and species and the use of the microscope.

Introduction to Fungi

Sat 21 and Sun 22 October 2017

Come and explore the fascinating kingdom of Fungi. From towering toadstools down to microscopic filaments of mycelium, this course will explore the diversity of form and function that these important organisms display.
We will cover the biology and some of the ecological roles and symbioses that Fungi form, to aid as a platform for understanding their life cycles and which habitats they can be found in.

2018 Ecology Courses 

Introduction to Hoverflies

Sat 10 - Sun 11 March 2018 

Tutor: Roger Morris. 

Similar courses that might interest you: 

Grow Leader Course

Starting Thursday 6 July, 2017

12 full day sessions (9.00 – 4.30), delivered over 6 months. 

Feed Bristol's Grow Leader Course is back by popular demand. The course aims to support more people to become effective facilitators to engage a range of people in ecological land management and food growing. With a focus on how to develop projects and activities where people and wildlife can thrive in a productive food growing setting.

Find out more here.