Projects & Events

Ambios is a not-for-profit running UK and European training projects that help people achieve their goals for nature, science, education and employment. As part of our commitment to nature conservation training, we run a number of science and research projects at Lower Sharpham Farm.  Our research furthers our knowledge and understanding of biodiversity in a farmland setting. The projects are always delivered by wildlife professionals working alongside trainees and volunteers.  This unique model allows us to reduce the cost of advancing biodiversity research whilst also training the next generation of wildlife professionals.

Current Projects

We are currently running a number of research projects focusing on different aspects of farmland  bio-diversity. These include Bumblebee Longevity and a Farmland Bird Survey.  These projects will be our focus for the coming years and each will reveal interesting stories about the biodiversity of Lower Sharpham Farm. In addition to these we also run regularly run a “Citizen Bioblitz”, a one day event open to all, inviting the public to help us record the biodiversity in a given area within a 24 hour period. For further information on each of these projects and also past projects please click on the links below.

Projects and events

Current Project

Bumblebee Longevity

Bumblebees play a crucial role in the pollination of important crops, yet they are currently threatened by the decline of their favoured habitats. Our Ambios research project is gathering data on the longevity of Bumblebees in order to better understand factors affecting their survival. The project began in 2016 at our South Devon base, Lower Sharpham Farm.

Current Project

Badger TB Vaccination Deployment

Ambios has been carrying out an annual Badger TB Vaccination Deployment on the Sharpham Estate, Totnes, Devon since 2014. The aim of this project is to test methods of protecting cattle from TB, whilst also protecting badgers and maintaining their role in the biodiversity of rural landscapes. The data gathered as part of the project will also be used to gain insights into the local badger population. Unfortunately no vaccine is available for 2017.

Current Project

2017 Bat Project

Ambios has been informally monitoring the bats at Lower Sharpham Farm for some years. When the Linhay was redeveloped in 2014 a bat survey of the original part-timber building indicated the presence of Lesser Horseshoe bats (Rhinolophus hipposideros) although only a single individual was observed. There is a significant maternity root of Lesser Horseshoe bats in the roof of the old stable block at Sharpham House.

Current Project

2017 Biodiversity Quadrat Project

As the current land management practices at the farm change in favour of promoting greater ecological diversity a system of methodical constant effort botanical (and other species) monitoring is required. The results from this work will help to monitor trends and variations over time and inform ongoing land management decisions. A number of 20m x 20m fixed quadrats will be established at specific locations across the farm where some form of ecological change is either predicted or highly likely.  These areas will then be regularly monitored  (by each Trainee cohort if practical) for plant and other species.

Past Project

Farmland Bird Survey

Our research project seeks to  provide data on the range of birds using farmland at both Lower Sharpham Farm, Totnes, Devon and Labrador Bay RSPB reserve, Teignmouth, Devon. We hope to gain a deeper understanding of the  difference in bird use between the sites and the comparative potential of each site for breeding/overwintering Cirl buntings.

Current Project

Citizen Bioblitz

The 24 hour citizen bioblitz is a regular one-day event held by Ambios. All are welcome to join us in a 24-hour race to find as many species as possible within a given area. As well an increasing our knowledge of local-biodiversity, these events enable people from all walks of life to learn more about nature and wildlife.

Past Projects

Sharpham Sounds

In 2013 we ran a workshop that focused on intriguing recorded sounds from the natural world in combination with spoken word to create a sound art exhibition and performance at Sharpham House. Learners from 6 different European counties shared, interpreted and developed recordings into an installation exhibition, radio broadcast and online archive.

Past Projects

Euro GIS/GPS 2013

Our EuroGIS-GPS (2011-2013) project trained over 120 volunteers, students and workers in wildlife conservation from 5 different European countries how to use hand held GPS location equipment linked to free computer mapping software (QGIS). This technology can be used to map animal and plant species to specific locations to a much higher level of accuracy than has previously been achieved. By delivering this training across a variety of European organizations we are helping to create an international standard for wildlife mapping and facilitate future co-operation.