Introductory Short Courses

These carefully designed courses, particularly aimed at budding ecologists, are suitable for beginners and are taught by practicing ecologists. Our courses offer a mixture of classroom and practical field work to  help reinforce new knowledge and skills.

Great Crested Newt Ecology and Surveying (Somerset): 2022 dates to be confirmed

SKU 00143
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Product Details

Great crested newts are widespread across lowland England and occupy a range of habitats, in rural, suburban and urban areas. Although they breed in ponds, they spend much of their life on land. This means that there is potential for great crested newts to be present on many development sites. Therefore it is important that ecologists know how to survey for them and have a good understanding of their ecology.

This course is NOT a way of getting your survey licence as Natural England no longer accepts a certificate from a course or a signature from a course tutor. We are planning to do a Revise and Assess program at some point - please contact us if you would like be on our list for that.

Course content:

This is an introductory level course suitable for those working in consultancy or conservation and maybe working towards their licence. The course will be classroom and field based and will cover the following topics:

  • Ecology and habitat requirements
  • Identification
  • Survey techniques
  • Practical activity- making bottle traps
  • Evening and early morning field visits to undertake basic survey techniques


The course will be held at Carymoor Environmental Centre, Dimmer Lane, Castle Cary, Somerset’ BA7 7NR – location map, directions and accommodation providers will be provided when you book.


On the first day the course will begin at 5:30pm and finish by around 9.30pm. There will be a short break for food during the evening and we advise you to bring a packed meal. On the second day we will meet at the car park at 6:30am to complete the survey work, and this will draw to a close by around 8:00am.

Directions and a list of accommodation will be provided when you book.

What to bring:

Details about appropriate equipment and clothing will be provided in a 'what to bring' list when you book.

Need an invoice?

If you are a company and require an invoice do NOT book here but email us instead. You will need to give us your company details and purchase order (if you have one) and we will raise an invoice. Joining instructions will be sent separately.


Email Sue on or phone her on 07818 073 660

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General Course Information

The following general information is applicable to most of our Introductory Courses, however some courses have specific information so please read your course description carefully. If you have further questions, please visit our FAQs section.


Are you a full-time student, full-time volunteer or are you unemployed? Please enter the code 9GZNBNH7UV5Z at checkout to get 20% off the price for our one or two day introductory or online courses. This code IS NOT VALID for advanced courses. Please note you will be asked to provide evidence of your student / volunteer / unemployed status on the day you attend the course.

Our one-day introductory courses cost £120 per person

Our two-day introductory courses cost £220 per person

If you require an invoice then please email otherwise please book online. We cannot take cheques or payments over the phone at this time.

To request an invoice please state:

  • company name and address
  • purchase order number (if applicable)
  • course title/date
  • delegate name.

What to bring: 

You will need to bring a packed lunch for each course day, bring a drink bottle for the field visit. Drinks are available during the classroom sessions. Please also check your specific course details as you may be required to bring additional equipment.


Our introductory courses usually commence at 10am and finish at around 4-4.30pm, however please check your specific course details as differences in timings are stated in the course description. For example two-day courses tend to finish later on the first day.


Our courses are held at various locations including Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Bristol, Hampshire and Surrey. Please check your course details as locations are stated in the course description.

In case you need to stay overnight nearby the course location, we will provide you with a list of local accommodation once you have gone through checkout.

Course sold out?

If you would like to register your interest and be the first to know about our next available dates for any of our courses, please email making sure you state the course you are interested in and we will put you on the list and let you know about next available dates.

This is what some of our students have said about our introductory level courses:

“I’m positive that this experience has helped me gain employment in the ecology sector.”

“Sue has a great knack to empower the field botanist in you.”

“I very much enjoyed the course and was surprised by how much we were able to fit in. I would definitely come on another course! Thanks very much!”

I would whole heartedly recommend this course to anyone looking to brush up on their field skills.”