Mary Brancker Bursary Report 2018


Independent Conservation & Wildlife Society ICWS

At Brooksby Hall Campus, Brooksby Hall, Melton Mowbray, Leciesterstere.  LE14 2LJ

on Wednesday 27thApril 2018

It was a great pleasure to be invited to attend the bursary degree presentations at the college.  Belle warmly welcomed us into one of the very grand oak panelled lecture rooms in the main house.

Brooksby Hall.  The architecture and immaculate grounds, with exquisite mature gardens and an ornamental lake.  In the late 18th and early 19th centuries many famous names owned or leased the Hall as a hunting lodge to enable them to follow the Leicestershire hunts, playing significant parts in history.  Now as part of Brooksby Melton College (a specialist vocational Further and Higher Education college) Brooksby Hall offers superb facilities set in beautiful grounds in the heart of rural Leicestershire.

It appeared to be a very calm and lovely setting to undertake a degree course right out in the countryside and with excellent facilities for the students to use.    After meeting the two tutors that accompanied the four students we settled down to listen to the inspirational degree dissertation presentations.  The students were very nervous as this was a rehearsal for their final presentations at the end of their courses to complete their degree dissertations.

The students had power point presentations prepared with their objectives, facts and figures, how they undertook the studies, what equipment they needed, the data results with charts and tables and final conclusions.

Equine project on how saddle pads retain heat and cause fatigue to the horse

by student Vicky Powell

Vicky’s project was working on how pads under saddles retain heat and cause more fatigue to the horse.  Using heat seeking devices this project how pads made from a new material caused the horse to be less fatigued.  The outcome of the research showed that using the new material did help with keeping the horses cooler.  The manufacturer of the pads worked closely with Vicky and was very pleased with the outcome.

Vicky is extremely keen on all aspects of equine work and has a vision of being a top international show jumper.

How playing music and audio recordings affects the behaviour of dogs in animal home and refuges by student Heather Coburn

Heather described how she had visited a local dog refuge and played different audio recordings both of words and music to the dogs in the animal refuge.  Many of the animals have been mistreated and Heather wanted to help in calming the animals.  One recording Heather played showed a rescue dog called Jessie listening to a Paddington Bear audio, Jessie turned round went into her bed and went fast off to sleep.  Outcomes of the study that many of the dogs became calmer but because Heather had not got transport she could not visit a further number of rescue centres.

Heather would like to work in a zoo with big cats in the future.

Hermann’s Tortoise Project by student Hannah Brailsford

Hannah described her research project on how the enclosure size affects the activity of the tortoise.  Hannah made a shallow box and then divided the box up into small and larger areas.   Outcomes were that the tortoise moved around in the larger spaces and used all the areas in the larger areas and was more active.

Hannah is very keen to become a zoo keeper in the future.

Specialist products designed to help blind canines by student Jade Jordan

Jade’s pet dog had become blind due to Diabetes so Jade set her project to look at products that could assist the dog not bumping into things and hurt themselves.  Jade sent to America for a harness with a protective head detector called a Muffins Halo, scented tracer spots to put on items and echo location set that is put on the dog’s collar.  The outcome was after research that the echo location set was the most successful. Jade stated that this was the first time research had been carried out in the United Kingdom.

Jade works part time in a veterinary practice and is to take a year off after finishing her degree course.

The students record thanks to all at the ICWS for their kind support with the bursary funding as it was so helpful for their studies.

Also the tutors thanked the ICWS for the support for the students and the college and would like this good relationship to continue.   The next cohort of students would be specifically wildlife based.



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