Spring is Springing– new guidance for Ecology survey reporting

As the ecology survey season rapidly approaches, many protected species, including bats, reptiles, dormice and great-crested newt, are becoming active.

As you can see from Greengage’s Ecology Survey Calendar the survey season for particular protected species runs until September. However, it may be necessary to undertake surveys at different times throughout the season, so it’s important to consider the ecological constraints of a development site early in the pre-planning programme.

To help with writing ecology survey reports the Chartered Institute for Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) recently released Guidelines on Ecological Report Writing 2015 . This document is designed to help ecologists ensure that their reports are ‘succinct, fit for purpose, tailored to the requirements of the reader’. The guidelines are also intended to act as a reference for those responsible for assessing reports including local planning authorities or statutory nature conservation organisations (SNCOs). Therefore, meeting the requirements of the guidance will be important to avoid potential delays in the planning process.

An additional set of guidance that has been recently announced, although not officially released, is BS 8596 Surveying for bats in trees and woodland. This standard will provide guidance on survey techniques for non-specialists (including arboriculturists) and detailed techniques for specialists. A draft of the document is currently out for public consultation with publication of the final document proposed for September, although we will keep you updated with any developments in the interim.

If you would like to discuss the ecology survey season or potential ecological consideration in relation to any of your schemes, please email james.bumphrey@greengage-env.com or call him on: 0203 544 3991.