The Haugimont estate

A sustainable rural campus. The Domaine d'Haugimont is an exceptional site belonging to the University of Namur. It is located in the heart of the Province of Namur in the superb Condruzian countryside. The region has more than 200 kilometres of marked paths.

Facts and figures

360 hectares of diversified biotopes, including

  •  295 ha of woodland,
  •  56.5 ha of meadows, including 11 ha of organically grown orchards,
  •  6 ha of parkland, courtyards, gardens and buildings, including 3 houses and a lodging,
  •  2.5 ha of ponds and puddles,
  •  a breeding farm of 400 sheep at the Sheep Research Center (CRO) and at the educational farm of the Department of Veterinary Medicine.

An estate open to the public

  • An estate open to the public and to schools for training, discovery and leisure activities (geo-tours, apple festival, sports races, etc.).
  • Each year, UNamur offers a day of free activities around a marauding at the old orchard. For more information...
  •  A 70-bed lodging is available for students on excursions to the estate, for staff members on a field trip and for external groups such as schools, scouts and others.  More about the Haugimont Estate lodging (in French) here...

A place for teaching and research

  • An outstanding teaching and research facility for students and researchers in veterinary medicine (farm), geography (landscape observatory), biology and ecology.  The Centre de Recherches Ovines, a flagship sheep farm in Wallonia, which plays a key role in the training of breeders.
  • A place for training DNF agents in hammering, thanks to the installation of a "marteloscope" by the non-profit organisation Forêt Nature.

Grazing land amended without the use of external fertilisers

  • Apart from the orchard, which does not receive any fertiliser, the meadows are amended with composted manure from the Ovine Research Centre's farm. This is a best practice in the area.
  • All the pastures are also included in the Site of Great Biological Interest (SGIB) because of the presence of fairly rare species. This area is subject to periodic inventories and specific maintenance.
  • Three ponds have been created in the grazing areas and thus contribute to strengthening the ecological network of the territory.

An organic high-stem orchard of old varieties

  • One of the largest high-stem orchards of old varieties in Wallonia (600 apple trees and 25 different varieties) and the project to turn it into a conservation orchard over its entire surface area in collaboration with the CRA-W.
  • A production of organic apple juice consumed in a short circuit.
  • A partnership with Reinette & Co for the development and maintenance of the orchard's fruit. 
  • An yearly marauding at the old orchard.  Every year, the UNamur proposes a day of activities around a marauding. 

A preserved forest estate

    • The forestry management is carried out according to the Pro Silva regime, which is close to nature and whose motto is "imitate nature, hasten its work". The estate received the 2016 Environment Prize from the Baillet Latour Fund, awarded for its Pro Silva forest management.
    • 17% of the forest area is included in Natura 2000 with 2 ha of this area as a conservation island.
    • The entire forest area is also listed as a Site of Great Biological Interest (SGIB).
    • Support for the "resilient forests" project launched by the Minister for the Environment to accompany the recruitment of spruce clearings so that the natural seedlings best adapted to climate change can develop.
    • A hunting method that is more respectful of animal welfare, the silent stalking.
    • A place of genetic experimentation of the DEMNA for red oak and Douglas fir.
    • The presence of a stand of ash seeds harvested for their high genetic value in terms of conformation for sawn timber.
    • Short circuit: use of wood from the Haugimont estate in the carpentry for the construction of the new science building and for the cladding of the building housing the UNamur Life Sciences Technology Platform.

A place to promote biodiversity

In parallel with a reflection on how to integrate sustainable development issues into research activities, some projects aim to contribute to promoting biodiversity:

  • Two apiaries were thus created in May 2022, one in the garden of the Carmel student residence in Jambes, the other at the Ovine Research Centre in Haugimont.  For more information...
  • Agri-environmental measures (MAE) are also carried out in favour of biodiversity in the meadows, such as:
    • mowing the land centrifugally and at a reduced speed,
    • the maintenance of refuges for small fauna (permanent piles of well-exposed wood),
    • conservation of the natural flora present on the edges of the plots and the slopes,
    • maintaining good sunlight in ponds.
  • Measures in favour of biodiversity are also planned within the framework of the agreement with the CRA-W as part of the integration of the network of conservatory orchards, and involve installing
    • nesting boxes (7 per 60 trees),
    • facilities to accommodate useful wildlife (insect nesting boxes, wood piles, stone piles, ponds, etc.),

The Projects

  • Registered nature reserve.
  • Maintenance and creation of new ponds.
  • Extension of the resilient woodland project to include chalarose ash woods.