Meet the Ecosulis Biodiversity Team

Posted by Daniel Allen on 20/06/2019
 

With a background spanning industry, academia and the third sector, the hugely experienced Ecosulis Biodiversity Team offers clients a diverse range of skills and expertise. Learn more about our fab five below.  

 

Cain Blythe

Ecosulis Managing Director

 

 

With over 20 years experience, Cain specialises in habitat restoration, nature recovery and the use of technology in conservation. As Managing Director of Ecosulis, he has extensive business, contractual and commercial expertise.

Cain is focused on delivering solutions that ensure attractive vibrant places for people, and which also provide havens for wildlife. He has presented to a variety of audiences on biodiversity-related subjects across the UK and in Europe, and is currently involved in innovation around biodiversity monitoring, measurement and automation, rewilding, blockchain and landscape-scale restoration.

Cain supports both Ecosulis clients and the Ecosulis team in the delivery of high quality project outcomes. He has significant experience of overcoming a wide range of challenges, such as those involving technical complexity, wildlife legislation, time restrictions and numerous other obstacles.

With a commitment to partnership, Cain believes that the best solutions are often the simplest, and that the best results arise from collaboration. He is qualified as a Chartered Environmentalist, and a full member of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment, and the Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management. 

Specialities:

Habitat restoration and enhancement

Biodiversity monitoring and measurement

Technology and conservation e.g. automation, blockchain, web apps

Rewilding

Biodiversity and health

 

Dr. Paul Jepson

Ecosulis Nature Recovery Lead

 

 

Paul recently left an academic position directing Oxford University's MSc Biodiversity, Conservation and Management course to work more directly at the intersection of natural asset restoration, finance and technology. He previously worked for 15 years in Indonesia running and designing conservation programmes, and started his career in local government working on urban conservation projects in Manchester and Shrewsbury.

Paul is is passionate about innovation and working with clients to research and co-design new approaches and solutions.  He is a creative, interdisciplinary thinker who contributes a unique blend of theory, practical experience and cutting-edge knowledge. Widely published and regular contributor to TV documentaries and radio,  he has a doctorate in protected area policy, co-founded the fields of conservation biogeography and conservation culturomics, and is a member of the Rewilding Europe supervisory board. He is also skilled at convening and managing working groups who can look beyond the present to frame and inspire next generation policy, enterprise and practice.

 

Vance Russell

Ecosulis Biodiversity Lead

 

 

Vance has more than 30 years of experience working in rewilding, biodiversity conservation, agricultural landscapes, restoration and natural resources management. At Ecosulis he is responsible for developing and implementing cutting edge research, innovation and technology projects focused on rewilding, habitat restoration and biodiversity conservation

Prior to joining Ecosulis, Vance worked as a climate change and wildlands consultant for a variety of clients worldwide, including Distributed Energy Financial Group, Flora & Fauna International and the California Parks & Recreation Department. He was the California Director of Programs for the National Forest Foundation where he managed, led and funded community forestry projects. He was also director of Audubon California's Landowner Stewardship Program working with farmers and ranchers to restore habitat in a manner compatible with existing agricultural operations. Vance is the Board Chair of Groundswell International, serves on the board of trustees for the South Downs National Park Trust, and serves on the Rewilding Leadership Council. Vance received an MSc in Forest Science and Natural Resources Management from Cornell University, and a BA in Biology from the College of Wooster.

 

Sara King

Ecosulis Biodiversity Assessment Specialist

 

 

Sara has over 10 years experience working in the environmental sector. Over the last four years she has specialised in designing and implementing biodiversity monitoring schemes for a range of clients and stakeholders, including Bristol and Essex Water, and Clinton Devon Estates. This work has included developing innovative tools that can improve biodiversity monitoring, including biodiversity and health assessment, the biodiversity assessment of species reintroductions and land management practice, and the Biodiversity Quality Calculator

Sara is interested in trophic rewilding, particularly the use of keystone species to restore natural processes and ecosystems. She is currently undertaking biodiversity monitoring on a range of schemes, including habitat restoration projects and beaver and pine marten reintroductions. She has also worked on several schemes to measure the impact of natural grazing on biodiversity, and helped several water companies with the biodiversity asset assessment of their landholdings. Sara is currently developing models to assess where landscape-scale ecological restoration projects (including species reintroductions) could be undertaken within the UK.

"I'm really excited to be working in my specialised field right now," she says. "We seem to be at a turning point where innovative methods of reversing the trend in biodiversity decline, and recovering nature through species reintroductions and changes in management, are really gaining momentum."

 

Dr Alan Feest

Ecosulis Scientific Advisor and Board Director

 

 

Afte graduating in Biological Sciences (Ecology) from the University of Exeter in 1979, Alan obtained his doctorate in Ecology at the University of Bristol in 1984, before spending a further three years in postdoctoral ecological research. After training as a teacher and two years as Head of Agricultural Science at Fakenham High School in Norfolk, Alan returned to the University of Bristol and was appointed tutor in Environmental and Health Studies, firstly in the Department for Continuing Education, and latterly in the Faculty of Engineering. He is currently the course director of the University of Bristol/CIWEM's MSc Water and Environmental Management course. He was also the founder and chairman (for five years) of Bristol Ecological Consultants, and was a specialist author of the recently published IPBES Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services.