My Wild University

The University of Bristol has joined the My Wild City project to promote nature across across its 200 acres of gardens and open spaces and 400 acres of farmland. These natural habitats range from extensive mixed woodland and calcareous grassland around halls of residence through to green roofs and living walls within its inner city estate.

This area has a network of enthusiastic local park groups who have been working with the Council for a number of years to provide new opportunities for people and wildlife within their local parks. Many gardeners also encourage wildlife by planting pollinator-friendly plants and putting up bird feeders, with this work recognised through the local 'Good Front Gardens' Award.

The University of Bristol aims to show how high-level educational institutions can be part of to creating a nature-rich city for the benefit of its students, staff and our wildlife.

Research by Professor Jane Memmott and Dr Katherine Baldock suggests bees and other pollinating insects thrive as well in towns and cities as they do in farms and nature reserves. In fact, there are more bee species in urban areas than in the surrounding farmland with a number of rare pollinators found living in cities. 

With 2017 being the Year of the Pollinator, the university has launched its involvement in the My Wild City project with a new wildflower meadow and signage outside Royal Fort House commemorating the action they are taking to create a buzzing, bee-friendly environment. Further signs will be placed in meadows outside Oldbury House, on St Michael’s Hill and at Clifton Hill House.

‘My Wild University’ also includes projects undertaken by the Roots Community Garden student-led volunteering group, who promote positive mental health and wellbeing by encouraging more students to connect with nature and their local community.

Dr Katherine Baldock, who joint leads the My Wild University project, said

"The Estates team already has some great initiatives in place to help pollinators on campus and these two new meadows are a fantastic addition that provide food for pollinators and improve the surroundings in locations that can be enjoyed by staff, students and visitors."

 


Have you added a wildlife-friendly feature in your garden, or indeed across Bristol? Tell us about it and we'll add it to the interactive My Wild City map 

Image credit: Jane Memmott