This camp, run in partnership with the Marine Biological Association (MBA), is for young people between 16 and 24 years old who are interested in marine biology and marine science. It will include sessions on rocky shore ecology, marine citizen science and marine conservation as well as giving in-sights into careers and Higher Education courses. The highlights of the week include a guided walk along coast paths (meeting the Skomer Island MNR staff), plankton sampling and microscope identification, cetacean and seal surveying and seine netting.

Tutor: Helen Lewis

Helen Lewis has been a tutor at Dale Fort Field Centre for the last two years, after working as an A Level Biology teacher. She studied Marine Biology and Oceanography at University and has lots of fieldwork experience, especially on the rocky shore. She particularly enjoys sharing her local ecological knowledge and helping people of all ages to engage with science and the environment around them.

Example Timetable

Saturday: Arrival and Welcome

Arrival and Welcome to the Centre by 17.00. The evening session will give the opportunity to meet fellow participants and go through plans and objectives for the course. A short introduction to the marine environment of Pembrokeshire.

Sunday: Plankton Sampling and Seine Netting

In the morning we will carry out plankton sampling, followed by a microscope workshop in the lab to identify the plankton and learn about plankton ecology. The afternoon will be spent in the Gann Estuary exploring the saltmarsh and having a go at Seine Netting, followed by a discussion on sustainable fishing.

Monday: Atlantic Grey Seals and Cetaceans

Today explore some amazing coastal sites around the county in search of Atlantic Grey Seals and Cetaceans. Learn about the biology and ecology of these different animal groups and learn cetacean identification surveying skills.

Tuesday: Rocky Shore Ecology
A day spent studying a rocky shore ecosystem. Complete a Bioblitz and gain skills in species identification and classification. Use these skills to complete a research survey on the shore, followed by analysis and discussion of the data.

Wednesday: Research in Marine Ecosystems

The day will focus on the value of research and how to plan carry out practical investigations. In small groups plan and complete your own short research project on a rocky shore ecosystem. You will gain skills in project planning, reviewing scientific literature, data collection, analysis and evaluation.

Thursday: Presentations and Course Review

Give a short group presentation on your research project. Followed by a review of the course and a discussion on future opportunities in marine science.

Activities subject to change. Short talks on marine issues and topics will be given throughout the course by centre staff and guest speakers.

Accrediting Agency

Duke of Edinburgh Award

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Full Board Accommodation
  • Hot and Cold Drinks
  • In Course Transport
  • Personal and Travel Insurance

Before You Attend

Start and Finish Times

Resident visitors are requested to report to the main office upon arrival for registration between 4.00 – 5.30pm. There will be a welcome talk at 5.30pm and dinner will follow at 6.00pm. Breakfast will be at 8.00am. The course ends at 12 noon on the last day - you will have a packed lunch to take away with you. For those travelling by train we will pick up at Milford Haven Station for the train that arrives around 4pm on the arrival day and we will drop off at Milford Haven for around 1pm on the departure day (we will be in touch closer to the start date to confirm the exact times as these are subject to train timetable changes).

What to Bring

  • Towel
  • Wash kit
  • Drinks bottle/flask and sandwich box
  • Personal medications
  • Torch
  • Day sack
  • Stationery
  • Camera (optional)
  • Indoor shoes
  • Thick socks
  • Binoculars
  • Warm coat for evenings and cooler days.
  • Warm old clothing for outdoors (not jeans)
  • Waterproof jacket and trousers (can be hired).
  • Strong sensible shoes or boots for walking.
  • Warm hat and gloves for inclement weather and sunhat and sun cream for sunny days.
  • Enough cash for your time here, there are no cash points nearby
Pay a deposit of £100.00 per item