• A winter in the USA

    22nd May 2017

    This winter, I was incredibly fortunate to take a three-month sabbatical from the VWT to work in the USA with the Michigan Predator-Prey Project. In early January, I headed across the Atlantic with bags overflowing with winter kit, ready to spend the season in Michigan. The Michigan Predator-Prey Project, led by Mississippi State University and Read More

  • Tracking the Pine Marten

    26th April 2017

    It’s day seven of my quest, I’m on the first transect of the day and I am about to check how much more rain is needed before I can use the word diluvian. The Scottish Highlands is my backdrop, and I’m sniffing poo. I’m told the aroma is akin to that of parma violets. I’ve Read More

  • PhD Student Blog – Greater horseshoe bat

    15th March 2017

    I’m just two-months shy of finishing the first year of my PhD at the University of Exeter with both The Vincent Wildlife Trust (VWT) and Devon Wildlife Trust. My research aims to examine the implications of how practical management and issues surrounding landscape connectivity can influence the conservation of the greater horseshoe bat (GHS – Read More

  • PhD Student Blog – In search of polecats

    1st February 2017

      “Why are you researching the poll tax?” is just one of the questions that I have been asked when explaining what I do. Or a more usual first question is: “oh, pole cats. Is that like a wild cat… actually, what are they again?” It is testimony to the elusive nature of the polecat Read More

  • PhD Student Blog – Pine martens & grey squirrels

    4th January 2017

    I am now over halfway into my PhD looking at the impact of the native pine marten on invasive grey squirrel populations. Working alongside the Pine Marten Recovery Project team in Wales, I am tracking and observing grey squirrels to try to understand their response, if any, to the presence of pine martens. My introduction Read More

  • Second phase of pine marten translocations

    14th November 2016

    After the excitement of finding our first Welsh born pine marten kits in early summer, there was more good news. Josie, our Field Assistant, managed to track down another female, PM13, who had moved a little way north of the release area. Josie put some baited cameras out to check on her and was rewarded Read More

  • PhD Student Blog – Bechstein’s Bat

    1st September 2016

    It has now been a year and a half since I’ve started my PhD at the University of Exeter and I still tend to get confused faces each time I start talking about my project. The bat lovers don’t always understand why I’m doing genetics and the geneticists don’t understand why I’m studying the Bechstein’s Read More

  • Miss Piggy’s Year

    13th July 2016

    It doesn’t seem like five minutes since the pine marten team stood in the dark on a drizzly September morning welcoming the first translocated martens onto Welsh soil. Since then the project has zoomed along at what seems like an incredible rate, hitting all the milestones we hoped it would: releases, sightings by the public, Read More

  • PhD Student Blog – Pine marten translocations

    26th April 2016

    We have asked our PhD students to write a series of blogs about their research. This is the first in the series and written by the VWT’s Pine Marten Project Officer and part-time PhD student David Bavin. It’s hard to know where to start with this blog about my PhD research; I started in April Read More

  • Back to the Highlands

    21st March 2016

    Having spent a couple of months in the Highlands last autumn while we trapped pine martens for translocation to Wales, subsequently followed by a couple of months in the office (recuperating?!), it was great to head back to the Highlands in early March. We were greeted with some glorious spring-like weather, stunning snow-topped mountains and, Read More