Research projects

Scientific research underpins all we do here at the Bug Farm. The whole site is managed following results from our research, putting science into practice in terms of the working farm and nature reserve, food product development and visitor experience.

We work with students, professionals and universities from the UK and abroad, carrying out world-class, cutting-edge research, largely on farmland biodiversity, ecosystem services provided by wildlife and the future of sustainable food production. Our work spans the food chain, with projects ranging from sustainable land management to consumer attitudes to novel foods.

Our farmland (livestock and arable), wildlife habitats and the two Sites of Special Scientific Interest (part of a wider Special Area of Conservation) that border the land, provide the perfect base for fieldwork. Whilst we are not an academic institution, we deliver collaborative projects working alongside top international universities and can provide co-supervision of undergraduate, MSc and PhD/DPhil students. For our current opportunities, please click here.

Featured research

Some of our recent projects include…

  • Exploring children’s changing perceptions of entomophagy

Academic institution: University of the West of England

Academic collaborators: Dr Verity Jones

  • The effect of arable field margin placement on beneficial invertebrates

Academic institution: University of Oxford

Academic collaborators: Professor Thomas Hesselberg, Professor Owen Lewis

Students: Alec Denny (MSc project), Lara Sarrionandia-Thomas (BA project)

  • Cross-pollination project: Revaluing pollinators through arts and science collaboration

Academic institutions: University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Aberystwyth University

Partners: National Botanic Garden of Wales, the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, Buglife

Academic institution: Aberystwyth University

Academic collaborators: Professor Mike Christie

Students: Dr Warwick Wainwright (MSc project)

  • Response of invertebrate communities to intensive management of improved pasture ecosystems

Academic institution: University of Oxford

Academic collaborator: Professor Owen Lewis

Students: Dr Paul Manning (DPhil project) – Rhodes Scholar

  • Soil structure and biological activity under contrasting farming methods of soybean in Brazil

Academic institution: Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Brazil

Academic collaborator: Professor Marcelo Augusto Batista

  • Factors affecting ecosystem service provision by dung-associated invertebrates

Academic institution: University of Oxford

Academic collaborator: Professor Owen Lewis