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  • Mustelids and me: how a school project led to a life-long fascination

    3rd October 2022

    Generally, I quietly work behind the administrative scenes and am known more for my style (as in writing guidelines) than my natural science. However, I was drawn to the work of Vincent Wildlife Trust because of my fondness – call it obsession – for all-things Mustelidae. In January 1977, a second-year (Yr 8) form teacher Read More


  • Counting bats in Kerry – VWT Ireland’s volunteer, Nora, keeps an eye on lesser horseshoe bats and their roosts

    15th March 2022

    The Trust owns seven buildings in County Kerry that held just under 2,000 adult lesser horseshoe bats in 2021. Nora Coffey and Kate McAney We rely on two long-term volunteers, Nora Coffey and Maire O’Connell, to conduct emergence counts at six of these each summer, between the last week of May and the first week Read More


  • A privileged peek into the hidden world of greater horseshoe bats

    16th November 2020

    It’s 3am on a Monday morning in June 2019, and I’m perched on a box in the cold dark of a small room, grateful for the many items of branded clothing I’d been issued with when I joined Vincent Wildlife Trust (VWT). I’m wearing them all now…and still I’m cold. I’m also struggling to keep Read More


  • Back on the trail of pine martens in northern England

    16th November 2020

    Thanks to funding from the National Lottery, VWT’s Back from the Brink (BftB) Pine Marten Project is facilitating and monitoring the natural recovery of the pine marten as it moves over the border from Scotland into northern England. Working with volunteers, landowners and land managers, we are surveying woodlands in Northumberland and Cumbria to collect information on Read More


  • VWT and the Irish Environmental Network

    27th July 2020

    VWT in Ireland undertakes what you might call a soul-searching exercise in the first quarter of every year. This has nothing to do with setting New Year’s resolutions but relates to our completing an annual application form to join the Irish Environmental Network (IEN). The IEN is an umbrella network that supports Irish environmental NGOs Read More


  • The impact of traffic noise on bat activity

    14th July 2020

    We are well aware that driving our cars around, perhaps in pre Covid-19 times, can have negative effects on the environment by increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, reducing air quality, and increasing the likelihood of pollution in waterways; all of which can have significant effects on human health, but what about Read More


  • The ‘bear’ necessities: collating and using evidence in mammal conservation

    29th June 2020

    As conservationists, we often have to make important decisions in our work about what management actions to undertake – from putting up nest boxes to total habitat restoration. To do this correctly, we need to gather a wealth of information such as local site conditions, resource and policy constraints, and any past experience. We also need Read More


  • Can genetics help us uncover the secret life of Bechstein’s bats?

    1st June 2020

    It is well known that bats are unique amongst mammals. Their ability to fly has allowed them to establish themselves in most continents and habitats, with the exception of Antarctica. Bats have also evolved a distinctive ability among land mammals to use echolocation as a tool for orientation. Both adaptations have allowed them to take Read More


  • A team effort: searching for the elusive barbastelle – PhD Student Blog

    20th May 2020

    Last year, I started my PhD at Sussex University in collaboration with Vincent Wildlife Trust, to study one of Britain’s rarest mammals, the barbastelle. Considered to be ‘near threatened’ by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, as well as being an Annex II species (meaning it has special areas of conservation designated to Read More


  • The Irish stoat and the Mostela

    7th May 2020

    I was just a few weeks into my Master’s degree in Ecological Management and Conservation Biology at Queen’s University Belfast when we were advised to start thinking about our work placement for the following summer. After class, I decided to call Kate McAney, Head of Conservation Development for Vincent Wildlife Trust in Ireland, to see Read More