University College Cork - Making Biodiversity Happen

Tags: biodiversity | guide | campus | University College Cork

University College Cork - Making Biodiversity Happen image #1 University College Cork - Making Biodiversity Happen image #2 University College Cork - Making Biodiversity Happen image #3 University College Cork - Making Biodiversity Happen image #4

Benefiting from Biodiversity

  • In 2010 University College Cork (UCC) became the first 3rd level educational institution in the world to be accredited with the prestigious international ‘Green Flag’ award
  • The Green-Campus programme, operated in Ireland by An Taisce, has seen the University save up to 1 Million in waste management costs, reduce waste to landfill by over 1000 tonnes and improve recycling from 21% to 78%. Furthermore, UCC has conserved almost enough water to fill the equivalent of the Lough of Cork!
  • We are a sector leader in this area and have recently been ranked 2nd in UI Greenmetric ranking of World Universities 2013.

Communicating Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity and Invasive Species Workshop UCC
  • Biodiversity Talk for UCC Building and Estates UCC
  • Talk on Ecosystem Services in Urban Green and Water Areas UCC
  • A complete habitat map has been commissioned for the whole of UCC campus. The first Interim report on the Biodiversity survey of the campus was returned
  • The Green Campus is being incorporated into the University’s new Branding programme.

  • The Intervarsity BioBlitz was the brainchild of a group of PhD students in the School of BEES, UCC. With the help of An Taisce and the National Biodiversity Data Centre the project was rolled out to an additional four campuses; National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG), Trinity College Dublin (TCD), Dublin City University (DCU) and Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT). The Intervarsity BioBlitz  aimed to provide a platform for biodiversity recording and monitoring on university campuses nationwide. The aim is to record as many species living on campus as possible within a 24hr recording period
  • Some 850 species records were submitted for UCC campus over the 24hrs
  • This amounted to some 451 different species being identified and recorded.

Wildlife Gardening on Campus

  • Our wildlife garden promotes biodiversity and educational value of the landscape through a coordinated landscape development works plan
  • We have UCC community Polytunnels
  • Our onsite restaurant grow their own herbs onsite and are expanding to vegetables this year.

Buildings and Structures

  • We have swift boxes on two different buildings in UCC
  • We have further plans for a green roof for a building in planning stage
  • Bat Boxes have been made and awaiting advice on best site to place.

Wildflower Meadows

  • We have a native Planting Garden
  • We have a comprehensive Wildflower Meadow being planted at present 
  • We have a native Riverside planting scheme
  • We give consideration and preference to Native plants in all planting schemes where possible.

Ponds and Other Wetlands

  • We have a river flowing through the heart of UCC with all the associated biodiversity…including inner city otters!
  • We have artificially created ponds which are used for research experiments.


  • We have several hedge rows on campus which include such species as non-native Griselinia, Butterfly-bush (Buddleja davidii) and Traveller’s Joy (Clematis vitalba). Native species also occur such as Ash (Fraxinus excelsior), Ivy (Hedera helix) and Bramble (Rubus fruticosus agg).

Woodland and Trees

  • UCC has a comprehensive ‘Campus Tree Management Strategy’. This report recognises the substantial tree resource on campus and makes recommendations on management standards required. (‘The survey recorded 121 different tree species on campus. The number of trees surveyed on campus totals 909’)
  • An interactive map of the significant trees has been developed.

For more information visit or email