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Ecology Careers

 

Case Study - Camley Street Natural Park

Claire Wansbury (FCIEEM) says:

One of the projects I am most proud of working on within Atkins is our study of Camley Street Natural Park. This was undertaken as a donation to London Wildlife Trust, with staff time provided through Atkins’ innovation Futures programme and individuals donating days through the Atkins volunteering system.

Camley Street Natural Park is located between St Pancras and King’s Cross Railways Stations. The Natural Park is surrounded by an area of major redevelopment. Camley Street Natural Park was opened to the public in May 1985, following a long local campaign to secure the location as a natural space.

London Wildlife Trust are raising funds to future-proof the Natural Park, and a robust evidence base was needed to support this effort.

Our study revealed that Camley Street Natural Park contributes a value of £2.8 million to the local economy and society annually.

Atkins’ ecologists and economists worked together, supported by experts from other disciplines to deliver an innovative study.

I learned so much from working with my environmental economist colleagues, and we drew in expertise for many other parts of Atkins to support our study.

Not only did the study help shape the discussion on the value of biodiversity in urban areas, it also inspired colleagues across Atkins to do more for nature and for other charities through the volunteering system.

 

"A day in the life" - by James Hicks, Ecologist

No two days in the life of an Atkins ecologist are the same. One day we could be in the field surveying for great crested newts or bats and the next we could on a construction site advising the best way to dig a river channel to benefit otters and water voles. Atkins ecologists work on a variety of game-changing and prestigious projects - from road to rail, housing to habitat creation – meaning we have the opportunity make a massive positive difference to the landscape and people’s lives.

The project I’m most proud of working on so far has been designing and advising on habitat translocation for major infrastructure projects. Working collaboratively with experts across disciplines, I challenged current mitigation and provided innovative solutions and techniques to maximise success rates for ancient woodland and grassland translocation. The culture of innovation is at the heart of the Atkins ecology team; whatever interests and ideas you have, everyone has a role to play here.

Atkins ecologists pride ourselves on technical ability, integrity and our passion for what we do. We have friendly and approachable national experts on a wide range of taxonomic groups and habitats who you can always talk to and learn from. If you want to work on sizeable and significant projects, genuinely benefit biodiversity and people’s lives and work in a team with a strong culture of innovation and inclusivity, Atkins is the place for you. 

“A day in the life – Working on the A9 Dualling project " - by Ross Harding, Assistant Ecologist, Warrington.

Within three months of joining the ecology team at Atkins I was asked if I “wouldn’t mind” going to spend a week in Strathspey in the Scottish Highlands working on the A9 Dualling project. I would be surveying Capercaillie, an extremely rare member of the Grouse family. Naturally, I didn’t mind! I jumped at the opportunity to help conserve one of Scotland’s flagship bird species, while working in some of the finest remaining examples of old Caledonian Forest in the country.

I spent four days walking transects in native Scot’s Pine woodland recording Capercaillie evidence while taking in the beautiful scenery and wildlife of the Scottish Highlands: Red deer, red squirrel, sprawling badger setts, cuckoo, ancient granny pines and huge wood ant nests to name a few highlights. We spent the final day investigating two historic records of Osprey nests, one of which was still being used by a breeding pair. Certainly, not an average day at work, I could not believe I was being paid to do this!

After only three months of being a part of the team I was given an incredible opportunity to work on an important project, with a prestigious species, in a breath-taking location. I can’t wait to see what my future with Atkins holds.

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