A Warm Welcome to NHSN’s Newest Naturalist

NHSN are delighted to welcome local naturalist, Ellie Coleman, to the team as our new Naturalist

Next week we’re delighted to welcome Ellie Coleman to the NHSN team to help us reach, engage and inspire more people. A local naturalist passionate about the natural history of our region, you’ll be seeing lots more of Ellie over the weeks and months ahead. For now, find out more about Ellie in her own words below.

In our time of climate and ecological emergency, it has never been more important to inspire people to appreciate, understand and protect the natural world. As volunteers, trustees and staff begin to implement NHSN’s 10-year plan, Action for North East Nature, we have set an ambitious target of engaging 25,000 people each year with local nature. To do this, we need to make sure we are sharing the wonder of North East nature with more people, reaching new communities and spreading the word further than ever before.

Soon, I will be joining the Natural History Society of Northumbria in my new role as a naturalist, helping to engage with as many people as possible about conservation and showcase the incredible nature of the North East through a variety of communications.  

My background in ecology and conservation is varied as I have worked in the UK and abroad, in practical conservation and education. I started my conservation journey with a degree in Ecology and Conservation from Exeter University, living in Cornwall for three years. Volunteering for the Cornwall Wildlife Trust and National Trust while living there gave me an appreciation for rare and wonderful habitats, as well as the coast and some of our charismatic pelagic species, such as the basking shark. After I graduated, I started a masters at Newcastle University in Biodiversity Conservation and Ecosystem Management. This degree introduced me to the work of the NHSN in the form of 1829 Talks and volunteering at Gosforth Nature Reserve. This degree and dedicated lecturers gave me a love for North East nature, with frequent field trips to far flung corners of the region.

My postgraduate career has involved working on the Northumberland Coast as a trainee with Coast Care and the Northumberland Coast AONB, learning to manage some of our rarer habitats, such as whin grassland and work with the communities who care for them. After this, I worked in Belize, studying crocodile conservation, again working with communities to protect their mangrove habitat.  

I am looking forward to starting at NHSN as I can’t wait to meet the members and volunteers who can help me to learn all the skills needed to be an enthusiastic and knowledgeable naturalist.

Ellie Coleman, NHSN Naturalist

We’re thrilled to welcome Ellie to the NHSN team and look forward to working with such a passionate local naturalist. Through her work with the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and her previous 1829 Talk for NHSN, Ellie’s love of natural history shone and I am confident she will be a great fit for NHSN and provide plenty of exciting opportunities for members, volunteers and supporters.

Leading on day-to-day communications and publications, Ellie will help NHSN achieve its vision of inspiring more and a wider range of people about North East nature. I hope you will join us in offering a warm welcome to Ellie.

Clare Freeman, NHSN Director