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The University of Southampton
Biological SciencesUndergraduate study

Learning more about conservation and animals

Second year Zoology student Greg Aldridge has been volunteering at Marwell Wildlife to get firsthand experience of conservation work.

He is the Biodiversity Management Intern this semester, helping out with administration for research projects at the park in Hampshire and for overseas locations, as well as carrying out literature reviews to aid researchers. He will soon extend his work to examine Marwell's Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) to find out exactly what species live there.

Conservation work at Marwell
Conservation work at Marwell

"A great deal of important scientific research happens at Marwell," says Greg. "Several projects are underway; perhaps one of the most well-known is the re-introduction of the Scimitar-horned Oryx  to Tunisia."

He has found the literature review fascinating: "We don't know as much as you would think about many species. I search for academic papers on certain animals to help researchers with their projects and find very little has been written about them. There is much work still to do."

Earlier, Greg volunteered in Madagascar through Operation Wallacea on the Ifotaka research project, in the Ifotaka North Protected Area of the spiny forests in the south of the island. During his time there, the team discovered the tuft-tailed rat in the area and, a possible new species of gecko.

After graduating, Greg hopes to secure a career in conservation.

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