A visit to The Forest of Biologists

18 January 2024

Our Publisher Claire Moulton recently visited the two Woodland Trust UK sites where we are planting new native trees for published Research and Review papers and protecting ancient woodland on behalf of our peer reviewers.

In March 2023, we announced our biodiversity initiative – The Forest of Biologists. As part of this initiative, we have been planting a new tree, in the Young People’s Forest at Mead in Derbyshire, UK, for each Research Article and Review article published in one of our journals – Development, Journal of Cell Science, Journal of Experimental Biology, Disease Models & Mechanisms and Biology Open.

A close up image of trees/plants
A diverse mix of tree species in this newly created woodland fosters biodiversity

To acknowledge the efforts of our peer reviewers, we are helping to protect the trees in a piece of ancient woodland, at Great Knott Wood in the Lake District National Park, UK. To keep track of our progress on this new biodiversity initiative, all these real trees – both newly planted and protected – are being represented together in a virtual forest.

For this project, we are working in partnership with the Woodland Trust, the UK’s largest woodland conservation charity, to ensure that this important work is done in a rigorous and sustainable way. At our recent visit to the new and ancient forest sites, as seen in the video, the Woodland Trust were able to show us the important work they had already carried out, shared their plans for restoration work yet to come and explained how they make sure that new woodlands are built with a resilient and biodiverse future in mind.

“I’m really thrilled to be working with The Company of Biologists on this project. Together we can make a lasting and positive impact on the environment.”

John Tucker, Director of Woodland Creation, at Woodland Trust

An overhead image of Great Knott Wood in the Lake District National Park, UK
Great Knott Wood in the Lake District National Park, UK


At the time of publication of this post, we have already planted over 1,200 new trees and helped protect over 3,600 ancient trees, with many more to come. Through this project, our author and reviewer contributions to science now also contribute to the natural world.

“We have received extraordinary support from the communities that embrace our journals.”

Claire Moulton, Publisher at The Company of Biologists

The Forest of Biologists brings together our love of science with a desire for greater sustainability in the way we work. Planting and protecting trees is only a part of that; if you are interested in our other sustainability initiatives, including grants for sustainable conferences, visit our Sustainability hub.

Related content:
The Forest of Biologists – an interview with Prof. Steven Kelly
The Forest of Biologists – biopositive publishing with Journal of Cell Science

Visit our journal websites

Development Journal of Cell Science The Journal of Experimental Biology Disease Models & Mechanisms Biology Open

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