A group of students from across Cornwall have returned with a wealth of new animal husbandry knowledge following a week-long study tour to the Netherlands.
The trip gave the students from Duchy College Stoke Climsland, Duchy College Rosewarne and Bicton College, the opportunity to gain experience in animal husbandry in a different country.
Kicking off with a visit to the Hawk Conservancy in Andover, the students were treated to some wonderful flying displays and amazing demonstrations of animal behaviour and training from a variety of birds, including the snake killing secretary bird from Africa and a range of vultures as well as some smaller raptors like the peregrine falcon.
Student, Eleanor Kingdon from Wadebridge, said it was “enlightening because we could compare the zoos there to here and there was such a big difference”.
“The zoos in Holland were huge and we got to see some amazing species,” she continued.
“I would definitely go again, I really enjoyed learning through the trip and it was so informative.”
The group also visited Burgers’ Zoo where they saw a range of species being housed in a selection of biomes as well as other enclosures and paddocks. The zoo had some species that are not often seen in the UK, such as the manatee and a phenomenal aquarium as well as Europe’s only tidal crab enclosure.
They also visited the Hoge Veluwe National Park before a visit to Groenhorst Barneveld, a land-based college with more than 2,000 animals and over 100 species.
Student, Julie Cotton from Plymouth, said Holland “was great fun and very interesting”.
“We visited lots of different places and we met lots of new people from other sites and other countries too which was cool,” she added.
Team Lead for Animal Management at Stoke Climsland, Bea Hawker, said it was such a great trip for the students.
“They visited lots of different animal based organisations and were able to see the different ways in which animals are treated,” she explained.
“The visit to the Dutch college was a highlight as our students got to see what it would be like to study in another country and had the opportunity to mix with people from another culture, with the same interests as them.”