Climate changes at Shuttleworth

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The land-based learning teams at Shuttleworth College are used to working in changing climates.

All-weather activities range from keeping horses heated in the snow at the specialist Equine Centre, to looking after lizards in the tropical biome.

Photos from the fields of the Old Warden equine centre show how the teams are keeping the horses in top shape despite the snow.

Angie Webb, Equine Lecturer,  said: “Whilst the current lockdown and then the bad weather, means many people may be working from home, that doesn’t apply when you have chosen a career involving animals and agriculture. Our teams have been here every day looking after the horses, within Covid-safety regulations of course. 

“It’s always a rewarding career working within horses, in the current situation, having an outdoor job is especially fulfilling.”

If you would like to learn about working with horses and the equine sciences then visit

https://www.shuttleworth.ac.uk/our-courses/subjects/equine

Meanwhile, at the Zoological Education Centre Curator Carl Groombridge and team are keeping temperatures up in the tropical biome and other units. 

The Zoological Education Centre opened September 2019 but is currently closed to students due to lockdown. However, work continues carrying for animals, including alligators.

Carl said: “Alan Titchmarsh wrote an interesting article about how, post lockdown,  young people can benefit from immersive education, actually being in the environments where they want to learn. This is exactly what we have here at our centre and we hope to welcome our young people back as soon as we are allowed. And, to see even more signing up to join us in September 2021.”

2019 report:  Students, staff and special guests attended a special ceremony to mark the progress of the foundations and steel structure for a brand new £3.65m Zoological Education Centre at Shuttleworth College.

Guest of honour, Owen Craft, General Manager at the world-renowned ZSL (Zoological Society of London) Whipsnade Zoo, near Dunstable, was joined by student ambassadors, The Bedford College Group CEO and Principal Ian Pryce CBE, Centre Curator Carl Groombridge and College Governor, Alasdair Simmons to tighten one of the structural bolts for the steel frame at the land-based learning campus at Old Warden near Biggleswade.

Bringing the Amazon and The Outback to Bedfordshire, Shuttleworth College’s ZEC is the only Further Education centre in the UK to have a specially-designed biome for housing tropical creatures from around the world. The unit follows an “Evolutionary Pathway” along which students learn how to look after every “order” of the animal kingdom. It includes an aquatic room, bird flight area and outside paddocks for the bigger animals. 

This highly specialised training prepares young people to follow the trails cut by earlier students who are now working in prestigious zoos and conservation centres.

Carl Groombridge, Centre Curator said: “The facility allows us to expand the range of animals we have here. For example we already have some caiman small-sized crocodilians, but will now have Mississippi alligators too in their own pool.

“We are already part of an international conservation and educational network, but this new facility will put us firmly on the world map. For me it is a dream come true.”

If working with animals from all over the world appeals then our Zoological Education Centre is a good starting point  https://www.shuttleworth.ac.uk/zoological/index.html