The Deer Initiative

Research student Owain Barton investigates the distribution of Roe deer across Wales for the DI.


Published date: 25/11/2016

Owain Barton, has been awarded a KESS 2 scholarship in partnership with Bangor University and The Deer Initiative to undertake a research project on the distribution of Roe deer across Wales. The aim of the study is to gain a more accurate assessment of the distribution of Roe deer across Wales and to predict, using population modelling, how this will change over time. The outcomes of which will be used to minimise the ecological and economic impacts by highlighting vulnerable habitat for targeted conservation management.

Talking about the project Owain said “ I feel that this places me in a unique position at the interface between scientific research and practical conservation management.  My hope is that, through collaboration, we can produce a scientifically robust tool for the proactive management of an expanding roe deer population across Wales.” 

Owain graduated in 2014 with an Undergraduate Master’s Degree in Biological Sciences (MBiolSci with Zoology Hons.) from the University of Liverpool. During which, his final dissertation investigated the population dynamics of European adders through the use of geographical information systems (GIS) and an individual based population model. 

Owain is expected to complete the research project by the end of November 2017. Alastair Ward, Operations and Research Director for The Deer Initiative commented “Owain’s project on the spread of roe deer in Wales will provide useful insight into how and perhaps why they have spread in the way that they have. Subsequent predictions of future patterns of spread will be useful in understanding how roe deer impacts may be distributed across the landscape, and will help planners with management decisions so that roe deer continue to be a natural asset to Wales”.

Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships (KESS 2) is a pan-Wales higher level skills initiative led by Bangor University on behalf of the HE sector in Wales. It is part funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF) convergence programme for West Wales and the Valleys.

For more detail on this project please contact

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