See the FxPlus page to find out how Penryn campus is involved with biodiversity

Pond Survey
Biodiversity refers to the biological diversity of our planet. It includes all living Organisms and the diverse habitats they live and thrive in. The interactions of these components ensures the continuation of life.


Biodiversity is a term used to describe the variety of life and its processes. This includes the sheer amount of species on earth and the communities and ecosystems where they occur.

The University of Exeter comprises an area of 153 hectares which includes a wide-range of different, rich habitats and provide a key link to other natural environments of importance in the Exeter area. The grounds are host to a wide variety of amphibians, birds, insects, mammals and reptiles, producing a diverse system of ecological niches, making this a fascinating place to study, work and visit. For a useful guide to the University grounds, see the Streatham Campus Horticultural Highlights and St Luke's Campus Horticultural Highlights.  For useful articles on everything from Drought Tolerant Planting to Bird Survey Highlights please go to the Grounds Team Blog

What we do to enhance biodiversity on University estates

The University takes great pride in its estates and takes the following actions to maintain and enhance its biodiversity:

  • Preserve and enhance existing valuable habitats.
  • Identify specialist measures for vulnerable species.  e.g. protection around known badger sites.
  • Erect explanatory signs by valuable habitats.
  • Reduce the use of residual pesticides e.g. use of bark mulch and natural predators.
  • Zero green waste policy.
  • Stimulate natural habitats by leaving  ‘eco-strips’ near streams and woodland edges.
  • Non-urgent tree felling works to be done outside the bird nesting season and hedges checked for nests.
  • Habitat piles left in appropriate areas to provide sources of food, shelter and hibernation sites.
  • Bird and bat boxes will be erected at suitable locations throughout the campus and monitored annually.
  • Planting schemes will use a variety of plants, trees and shrubs, with varying flowering times to encourage year round wildlife activity.

The processes by which our grounds activities are sustainably managed are detailed within our Environment Management System Operational Control Procedure 001 Grounds Management. The procedure details practice to minimise the impact of grounds activities on the surrounding environment.‌

View our Leaflet: 'Biodiversity at the University of Exeter'  for more information.

We have developed a Streatham Campus Biodiversity Trail and a St Luke's Campus Biodiversity Trail. Please do take a walk around the campuses and see the species supported throughout the year and the techniques we use to support wildlife on our grounds.

Further information on how the University is working to reduce the environmental impact of our operations and to make a positive impact on our local environment look at the Streatham Campus Biodiversity Strategy 2021-2023 and the St Luke's Campus Biodiversity Strategy 2021-2023.

The Grounds Team are often looking for volunteers to help with projects linked to biodiversity - please email Chris Guggiari-Peel, if interested in volunteering and also keep an eye on the sustainabilty events page.