Our in house Grounds Team maintain the diverse range of landscapes, public realm spaces, wildlife habitats and sporting facilities across the university. The team have adopted a wide range of practices to encourage sustainability and biodiversity including:
- Allowing wild flowers to establish and set seed.
- Provision of bird and bat boxes.
- Avoiding the use of peat for soil amelioration.
- Dead or dying trees left standing as habitats
- Planting species that host invertebrates and insects, especially bees and butterflies.
- Prunings and felled timber left as habitat piles in woodland areas.
- Using mulch materials, such as bark and gravel, rather than pesticides.
- Horticultural green waste used to produce compost and mulching materials
- Planting drought-tolerant species to reduce need for irrigation.
As part of a continuing commitment to biodiversity on our campuses, Grounds staff have constructed and introduced bug hotels.
These have been constructed, mainly, from recycled materials and are designed to mimic natural habitats such as nooks and crannies for mini-beasts and other invertebrates to shelter and nest. The structures have provided homes for masonry and leaf-cutter bees, as well as more common invertebrates such as woodlice, spiders, ladybirds and earwigs. They all make significant contributions to the trophic pyramid, pollinating plants and acting both as predator and prey to a variety of other living organisms.
The Coventry Campus benefits with green roofs at The Hub, Alison Gingell and Engineering Building. Even in high-rise urban settings, it has been found that green roofs can attract beneficial insects, birds, bees and butterflies. Rooftop greenery complements green areas within the city by providing stepping stones between green areas.
Staff and students from across the university are working together to help prevent the continuing decline of the species by taking not only practical measures but educating others and raising awareness. The university has achieved the Silver level of the Hedgehog Friendly Campus award, run by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society.
Find out more about hedgehogs and how to build a hedgehog home with our Groundsperson, Darcie Towers.
Westwood Sport Grounds and Local Nature Reserve
The nature area is located in the north west of Westwood Heath sports ground. It comprises of a pond, woodland and wildflower meadow grassland. The pond has a local designation of a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC) and is home to the Great Crested Newt. While the wildflower meadow grassland is now a Lowland Meadow Habitat of Principal Importance in England, containing 25 different species.
Green Flag Award
The Coventry City Campus has retained the prestigious Green Flag International award since 2014. As part of the judging criteria Biodiversity is considered with attention required regarding the appropriate management and conservation of natural features, wildlife and flora.