Huge Investment Made to Animal Care
North Lindsey College has made a huge investment of over £100,000 to its Animal Management Department.
The investment has been made to improve and create an area of brand new outbuildings which will house a range of animals including degus and rabbits, as well as reintroducing ferrets and chickens to the collection. This new development has also allowed the department to offer a home to two skunks, Montgomery & Watson who were looking for a new residence when their owners become unable to continue caring for them.
The centre has introduced eight brand new species since the start of term in September and there are plans to introduce meerkats or mongoose and ground squirrels in the near future. The old aviary has also been renovated and improved and an area set aside for some insect hotels to go with the new conservation pond.
The animal management industry is worth around £1 billion to the UK economy, with approximately 13,000 different businesses, as well as many self-employed professionals. North Lindsey College provides training from entry level all the way up to a HND in Animal Management offering students the full journey into a career in the industry.
Student, Luke Mineham (16) former Outwood Academy Foxhills pupil, is studying on the Level 1 Certificate in Land Based Industries and said, “A lot of money and effort has been put into the new build. There is a big improvement as the animals are out in the fresh air and getting exercise. This also means that we get to look after more animals in the department and also rescue new ones in.”
The College has rescued a phenomenal amount of animals since opening the animal centre in 2003 and staff take pride in re-homing and rescuing animals wherever possible. The centre currently houses over fifty different species including hamsters, rabbits, stick insects, bearded dragons, terrapins, guinea pigs, marmosets, tarantulas, snakes, frogs, birds and many more.
Sian Sayers (Unit Supervisor), said, “The animal management provision at North Lindsey College has increased from 24 species of animal in 2010 to a current 56 species with plans to further increase this during the year ahead. We were keen to invest in the facilities after introducing animal management to our Higher Education Department which has increased the overall number of students accessing the centre. We are so proud of the new accommodations and the rabbits are particularly enjoying their new home which encompasses a two-foot ground basket which allows the rabbits to burrow and express their natural behaviour.”
Whilst individual animal care businesses are usually relatively small, they can generate a lot of Job opportunities within the Animal Management industry. Students have gone on to work in veterinary nursing, dog grooming, animal rescue and rehabilitation, pet shops, zoos, wildlife parks and visitor attractions.