Biodiversity plan launched to benefit plants, animals and more
The University's first ever biodiversity plan will protect and enhance green spaces on campus, and in the wider community, for all who enjoy them.
Biodiversity means the variety of life on earth including different species of plants, fungi, animals, bacteria, the differences within species and different ecosystems such as marine, freshwater, grassland and forest.
We want our campus greenspaces to be biodiverse, not only for the species that call them home but for the benefit of humans too.
Biodiverse green spaces are great for our health & wellbeing, and also help us adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change.
We recognise the nature crisis as equally important to the climate crisis.
The University of Edinburgh recognises that our owned and managed sites encompass a range of habitats and species, with many opportunities to conserve and enhance conditions for biodiversity.
We are committed to actively enhancing conditions for and promoting biodiversity on our grounds. We support biodiversity in our local neighbourhoods and region, to improve the health and well-being of staff, students and the wider community.
Protect existing biodiversity
Enhance conditions for biodiversity where possible
Connect areas for wildlife
Promote engagement with biodiversity
Follow general landscape management principles
Incorporate biodiversity into University developments
Provide buildings & structures for biodiversity
Land-based carbon sequestration
The University's investment in carbon sequestration will also include a focus on the biodiversity of peatlands and woodlands.
It's Hedgehog Awareness Week from 1 to 7 May.
Find out how you can get involved to take action for nature.
Bioblitz, May 2022
The purpose of this bioblitz is to record as many animal species as possible on campus between 8am and 8pm on the day, using iNaturalist.
Help us map biodiversity across our campuses.
Monday 2 May - Central Campus & Moray House
- Tuesday 3 May - King's Buildings, Pollock Halls & Easter Bush
- Wednesday 4 May - Little France & The Western General (open to NHS staff and visitors)
- Thursday 5 May - Edinburgh College of Art (ECA)
Hedgehog home building, 3 May at 5pm
Learn how to build a hedgehog home at this student-organised event as part of Hedgehog Awareness Week. Keep an eye out on Hedgehog Friendly Campus social media channels for more details. Open to both staff and students.
This is a group of student volunteers passionate about hedgehog conservation and making a positive change to our campuses.
The society organises and participates in on-campus hedgehog surveys, litter picks and biodiversity surveys, and is excited to be collaborating with other Scottish universities on raising awareness about hedgehogs in the UK.
No matter your background or degree programme, you're welcome to join their activities, that not only benefit hedgehogs but also promote human wellbeing and connection with nature.
The word permaculture is a conjunction of the words permanence and culture. The term was coined by Mollison and Holmgren in Australia in the 1970s but the concept runs much deeper throughout Indigenous histories around the world.
Essentially, permaculture is to act in a way that would be viable for at least 10,000 years into the future – that is to say, to act in a way that ensures the indefinite persistence of our socio-ecosystems.
The King's Buildings Permaculture Garden is a grassroots growing project creating a community around permaculture. They aim to improve well-being, offer practical education, and cultivate connections in students, staff, and local communities.
Green Communities activities to look out for
Greening project along the Union Canal: after Easter.
Field Group biodiversity pond student engagement: mid to end of May.
Student-led night survey for hedgehogs at Pollock Halls and Peffermill Playing Fields: student volunteers will be recruited after May.
Tree planting: Coinciding with the start of COP15, 700 trees are being planted at the University’s Easter Bush campus for the second year running. Big Dig (fully booked)
- Sustainable Food Grant: New fruit trees and herb planters will soon be appearing on accommodation sites. The Kings Building Permaculture Garden society has received funding to train three students in permaculture methods.
- Blue carbon pilot: We are developing a pilot project in blue carbon, to restore seagrass meadows along Scotland's coast. Staff and students will have opportunities to contribute to the project as volunteers or through research.
- University's Woodland Management Plan: Soon to be launched, the plan will lay out our approach to managing pockets of woodland owned by the University across Edinburgh to benefit nature.
- Hedgehog Friendly Campus: We won a gold award, and have lots of exciting projects happening this year as we work towards platinum, including the student hedgerow project. Hedgehog Friendly Campus
- Kinder pest control: We are reviewing rat bait box designs to determine the safest for hedgehogs. We will also be trialling a non-lethal method to control seagulls at an accommodation site, the Scarem kite.