The wildflower areas at St Luke’s Campus are looking fantastic.
The results of the winter bird survey carried out by an independent consultant on our campuses have been received and we wanted to share the highlights:
Streatham Campus recorded its highest number of birds on campus since 2013/14 with 1,392 birds.
This represented 36 different bird species, 24% of which are listed on the the RSPB Red/Amber List; suggesting that the campus continues to be an important habitat for threatened species including the Grey Wagtail, Thrush, Sparrow and Redwing.
St Luke’s Campus, although smaller than Streatham Campus, recorded 290 birds; up from the 2013/14 baseline of 236 birds and continuing an upward trent.
Out of the 19 species recorded, 6 species are listed on the RSPB Red/Amber List including the Starling which had not been recorded at Streatham Campus.
It’s great to see that the work of the Grounds Team, to manage the environment and use maintenance techniques that consider and promote biodiversity and habitat conservation, continues to deliver positive benefits for wildlife.
The University’s Grounds Team have purchased a new piece of equipment with the environment in mind. The water based foamstream system deals with moss, algae and weeds without the use of chemicals.
It is proving particularly useful in the historic listed landscape of Reed Hall as there is no risk of damaging the stonework.
The photos below show some of our staff using the new foamstream equipment and the difference achieved in the treated areas.
The Grounds Team have proudly celebrated the successful re-achievement of the prestigious Green Flag Award for 2019/20 for our beautiful Streatham Campus and St Luke’s Campus.
The Award is the mark of a quality park or green space which has achieved the international standards for open space excellence and reflects the hard work that our dedicated team put into maintaining and nurturing our grounds to the highest standards.
Streatham Campus receives the award for the eighth consecutive year and St Luke’s Campus for the sixth consecutive year.
Bees and other pollinators are vital to growing lots of our favourite foods and for plants to flourish in our fields and gardens.
It is Bees’ Needs Week from 8th to 14th July 2019 and whether you are a farmer, a gardener or a manager of urban or amenity spaces, there is something you can do to help support our valuable insect pollinators.
There are five simple actions you can take to help pollinators and make sure their populations are sustained:
- Grow more flowers, shrubs and trees – our mature and exotic plants give long flowering periods for bees and insects.
- Let your garden grow wild – we have wildflower meadows located throughout our campuses to encourage biodiversity.
- Cut your grass less often – we ensure refuge strips are left uncut along campus watercourses to encourage wildlife.
- Don’t disturb insect nest and hibernation spots – we practise sympathetic maintenance regimes and have installed bug hotels and insect palaces throughout our campuses.
- Think carefully about whether to use pesticides – we use Integrated Pest Management to minimise the use of pesticides.
We are trialling a crop of summer flowering wildflowers at Reed Hall beds this year.
We have had to change the planting scheme and rest the beds this year, as we have had confirmation of a soil borne fungus disease.
We hope you enjoy these colourful wildflowers and we aim to reintroduce the traditional display of spring and summer bedding next year.
This year’s campus winter bird survey saw a rise on the Streatham Campus of resident bird numbers with 32 species records.
We were pleased to see a Treecreeper recorded in the Lower Hoopern Valley and a Nuthatch is spotted among the Bullfinches regularly visiting the bird feeders outside Streatham Farm.
It looks like we have more birds on St Luke’s Campus and the area supports four red / amber listed species.
Numbers are still lower than we would like to sustain; we try to manage open spaces to provide useful habitats but do with any suggestions.
It’s Go Green Week – head over to The Forum where you can find out how to boost your sustainability skills and learn how to make practical green changes. There are loads of activities and events going on until Friday 22nd March.