Study Nature Park Management Online

Learn about natural environments, and the management of zoos, wildlife parks, nature reserves. The course covers many of the fundamental tasks which people who work in such parks need to do; including weed control, soil management, land rehabilitation, landscape construction, etc.

Home Studies Course for Managing Zoos, Wildlife Parks and Wilderness Reserves


There are 12 lessons in this module as follows:

1. Introduction to Nature Park Management – the role and scope of nature parks; the importance of indigenous vegetation in nature parks.
2. Basic Ecology – the environment, plants and animals; ecosystem concepts.
3. Soil Management in Nature Parks – soil characteristics and problems; earthworks.
4. Plant Maintenance – basic gardening techniques; natural gardening; plant selection; succession planting; equipment.
5. Design of Nature/Wilderness Parks I – collecting site information; preparing concept plans.
6. Design of Nature/Wilderness Parks II – drawing the final plan; construction estimates; designing animal enclosures.
7. Weed Management – characteristics of weeds; weed control; environmental weeds.
8. Pest and Disease Management – management strategies; chemical safety.
9. Culture of Indigenous Plants – techniques for establishing vegetation; planting design.
10. Tree Management – role of trees in nature parks; tree maintenance plans; pruning and tree surgery.
11. Turf Care – turf varieties in nature parks; lawn preparation, establishment and maintenance.
12. Rehabilitation: Problems and Solutions – aims and strategies; soil problems and solutions in degraded sites.


Duration: 100 hours



On completion of the course you should be able to do the following:

  • Explain the importance of the interrelationships between various components of a natural environment within an ecosystem.
  • Develop management strategies for soils within a natural ecosystem.
  • Develop management strategies for plant maintenance practices, in nature parks.
  • Design a nature park, or a section within a nature park.
  • Develop management strategies for the control of weed problems in a nature park.
  • Develop management strategies for the rehabilitation of degraded sites in a nature park.


Here are just some of the things you will be doing:

  • Differentiate between different categories or types of nature parks.
  • Determine thirty living components of a specific ecosystem, studied by you.
  • Determine ten non-living components of a specific ecosystem, studied by you.
  • Prepare a labelled diagram to illustrate the interrelationships between at least fifteen different components of an ecosystem.
  • Explain the possible impact of removing two different specified organisms from a specified ecosystem.
  • Explain the potential impact of adding two specified, non indigenous organisms, to a specified ecosystem.
  • Explain how different soil characteristics can impact upon an ecosystem.
  • Describe the physical characteristics of at least three different soils, which are of significant to the stability of their ecosystems.
  • Assess aspects of soil dynamics on a site, including: -Topography -Soil life -Susceptibility to degradation -Sunlight (canopy penetration).
  • Compare the likely implications of using three different types of fertilisers, including: -Benefit to plants -Method of use -Environmental impact.
  • Explain the use of different soil conditioners including: -pH modifiers -Ameliorants -Organic matter.
  • Determine the plant maintenance requirements of a specific nature park visited and assessed by you.
  • Develop guidelines for the care of new plantations in a nature park visited by you.
  • Compare the suitability of three different types of grass cutting equipment, for mowing a specific park.
  • Compare the likely environmental impact of three different types of pesticides or herbicides, if used on a specific site.
  • Determine the significance to plant populations, of containment of different outputs, on a specified site, including: -water runoff -chemical spray drift -effluent -pollutants.
  • Prepare a plant collection of sixty plants.
  • Determine categories of landscape developments which are carried out in different types of nature parks, including: -Wildlife Reserves -Zoos -Sanctuaries -National Parks -Forest Reserves -Vegetation corridors.
  • Evaluate the designs of two different sections, of different nature parks, against given criteria.
  • Collect pre-planning information for the development of a site, within a nature park.
  • Prepare two concept plans for a nature park development, including: -existing features -clear labelling -legend -scale -north indicator.
  • Compare features of two nature park concept plans.
  • Plan the construction of a landscape development within a nature park, including: -materials lists (types and quantities of materials); -plan of proposed landscape development; -list of manpower and equipment requirements; -a work schedule.
  • Estimate the cost of construction in accordance with a specified landscape plan.
  • Estimate the cost of maintaining a specified section of a park, for a three month period.
  • Explain the impact of weeds on two natural environments in the learners locality, using examples.
  • Prepare a weed collection, of twenty different weeds.
  • Describe two different weed problems, in two different nature parks.
  • Explain five different weed seed dispersal mechanisms, for weed species collected.
  • Compare alternative control methods for a specified weed problem.
  • Select appropriate control methods for ten different specified weed problems.
  • Develop guidelines for weed control, in a nature park inspected by you.
  • Develop a management plan to reinstate indigenous flora on a specific site.
  • Explain the causes of three specified types of site degradation.
  • Describe five different techniques for controlling site degradation.
  • Describe five different techniques for repairing site degradation.
  • Describe degraded sites at two different natural areas, inspected by you.
  • Prepare construction details for work to be undertaken in the rehabilitation of a degraded site inspected by you.
  • Develop a management plan for a degraded site, in a natural area visited by you.


  • ensure your skills are up to date, by pursuing further studies or attending professional development activities.
  • Keep up to date with what's happening in the field of Nature Park Management. What are the most pressing issues and where is there likely to be more work?
  • Join a networking group to meet people who are working in the field.
  • Get some experience. Whether paid or unpaid, experience will always make your CV look more impressive and give you some practical knowledge to apply in your interview.

Home Studies in Environmental Science, with Australian Correspondence Schools, Environmental Management Department and lay a foundation to work in the sustainability and environmental industries.



If you are not sure you want to commit to a course right now, another option is to start by reading a book. A range of Horticulture and Environment books are available from the college Bookshop. Following are just a few examples of e-books written by the principal (John Mason) and staff of the school, are available as downloads through our online book shop. Read them on a computer, lap top, i pad, iphone, or book reader.


Suitable For:

This course is aimed at those working in or aspiring to work in the following fields:

  • Ecotourism
  • Conservation
  • Parks & Gardens
  • Land Management




Just go to the top of this page for pricing and enrolment options. If you have any questions you can contact us now, by:
Phone (UK) 01384 44272, (International) +44 (0) 1384 442752, or

Email us at [email protected]