I loved working alongside botanists and ornithologists in Portugal

Nicky Davies, MSc Wildlife and Conservation Management

Nicky Davies is studying MSc Wildlife and Conservation Management.

"I had previously worked in conservation as Biodiversity Officer for Herefordshire Council and the Shetland Islands Council when I decided that I needed to update my field skills and knowledge within the sector.

As I result of the conservation course, I have developed habitat surveying skills and geographic information systems skills, or GIS as everyone refers to in the sector.

My favourite time on the course so far has the field trip to Portugal which involved working alongside botanists and ornithologists. This is where I was able to put the knowledge gained in lectures into practice.

On one day we visited a salt marsh and undertook a Phase 1 Habitat Survey which involved identifying and quantifying plants in a selected area which was great fun.

I also undertook a work placement with Natural Resources Wales and was tasked with critiquing their project monitoring system within the Aquatic Biodiversity Delivery Unit.

At the end of the two week placement I presented my recommendations on how the system could be improved. This placement gave me an opportunity to understand the various units within the organisation and appreciate the range of systems they use to manage projects."