Bettyhill field centre

The MSc in Ecology and Conservation starts with a one-week field trip based at our Bettyhill field centre on the stunning north coast of Sutherland. This provides an excellent opportunity to observe wildlife, gain experience of a variety of ecological field methods and to build good relationships within the MSc class.

Download the course manual

Aims of the field trip are:

  • to gain experience and understanding of a range of Scottish ecosystems
  • to learn to ask questions about ecological processes
  • to learn and practice a variety of field sampling methods

It is also very much a team building exercise.

Activities during the field trip include:

  • study of plant community ecology on a coastal Site of Special Scientific Interest
  • sampling and identification of freshwater invertebrates
  • sand tracking of small mammal distribution in woodlands
  • behavioural observation of sea birds and, if you are lucky, marine mammals
  • practical introduction to the uses of drones in ecology
  • group project work on topics chosen by the students.

You can find more information about the field centre and have a look around the area using the Google map below.

Useful information:

We hope that you will choose to accept a place on our MSc. When you do so, full details about this field trip will be sent to you. For now, you may like to know:

The field trip departs from Aberdeen on Mon 28 Aug 09:00 and returns on Sun 3 Sept 17:00.

The leaders of the field trip are Dr Lesley Lancaster and Dr Julien Martin; any queries should be addressed to them.

Bettyhill

Feedback from previous field trips:

Bettyhill was my favourite part of the MSc! It was a great hands-on learning experience and a fun icebreaker for everyone on the course to get to know each other.

An amazing place to see wildlife and nature, to do some exciting field work and to get to know your new classmates!

Doing a mini project was an excellent introduction to the MSc, especially for people from a different background like me.

Days of wind, birds and marram grass, evenings of cooking and banter. Wouldn't have it any other way.