Derek Gow

Derek Gow


Derek Gow is a farmer and nature conservationist. Born in Dundee in 1965, he left school when he was 17 and worked in agriculture for five years. Inspired by the writing of Gerald Durrell, all of whose books he has read – thoroughly – he jumped at the chance to manage a European wildlife park in central Scotland in the late 1990s before moving on to develop two nature centres in England. He now lives with his two children on a 300-acre farm on the Devon/Cornwall border which he is in the process of rewilding. Derek has played a significant role in the reintroduction of the Eurasian beaver, the water vole and the white stork in England. He is currently working on a reintroduction project for the wildcat.


Derek’s book “Bringing Back the Beaver” will be available to purchase in the Groundswell Bookstore.

The Role of Beavers in Water Catchments

Discussion Tent

Beavers are agents of change. They can help regenerate water catchments, bring back diversity, add flood and drought resilience and improve water quality. Beaver reintroductions are happening now in many parts of the UK. Archie Ruggles-Brise from the Spains Hall estate in Essex will introduce his example of a beaver release into an enclosure at […]


Bringing Back the Beaver

Kellogg's Origins Soil Tent

Farmer-turned-ecologist Derek Gow provides an inspirational first hand account of how the movement to rewild beavers into the British landscape has become the single most dramatic and subversive conservation act of the modern era. Derek makes the case as to why the return of one of nature’s great problem solvers will be critical as part […]