The Leidener

A Blog by International Students at Leiden University

Field trips part 1

Leiden offers a number of English-spoken minors, one of which I decided to take up at the beginning of this year. Coming from a social sciences background and going into a biology-related minor I thought it good to give a small insight into the nature of the course. The minor is called ‘Biodiversity and Natural Environment‘. One thing that has stood out is the number of field trips. I have seen more of The Netherlands than I have from living here in the past two years; each trip follows a planned itinerary with a local specialist – we have had a boat trip to see the peaty Dutch flatlands, shown a ‘model’ conservation project along the Rhine, cycled the outskirts of Leiden (urban ecology), and visited a successful ecological corridor. The intention is to give an insight into Dutch landscapes, biodiversity, and conservation models, and has been hugely informative so far; it is great to see what you have read before you in the field and with an expert whom you can talk with directly.

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Boat trip along the peaty landscape. Previously an area of agriculture and peat extraction, it is now a large and carefully planned conservation area

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Urban ecology trip around Leiden – this house is part of an estate just opposite Leiden’s Sylvius laboratory

The first module of the minor has now recently finished, and I begun the next module ‘Small-scale patterns of biodiversity’ two weeks ago. Since it also involves a hefty field trip I will try to document it at more length in a future post. If you come to study at Leiden, I really recommend taking a look at the minors! It is a chance to get an insight into a field that might be entirely unrelated to your own.

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This entry was posted on October 13, 2015 by in Study.
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