over 10 years experience of bat surveys we can assist developers with
any issues relating to bats, seeking a solution that will cause minimal
disruption to the development process. We have survey licences to cover
all bat species in England and Wales and extensive experience of implementing effective
mitigation schemes for a wide variety of development types.
All 18 species of bats and their roosts are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010. This legislation makes it an offence to kill, injure or take a bat; disturb a bat in its roost; damage or destroy a bat roost; or obstruct access to a roost. Bat roosts are protected even when not occuppied as bats commonly move around a number of roosts throughout the year.
A basic bat survey, of a building or tree, can be undertaken at any time and involves an inital site assessment to examine the building or structure for possible roost sites and means of access as well as looking for evidence of bats such as live bats, remains of dead bats, concentrated piles or scattered droppings, staining and scratch marks. An assessment can then be made to submit with your planning application.
Where evidence of bats is recorded further surveys may be needed to count bats entering or exiting a roost at dusk or dawn. These evening emergence or dawn swarming surveys can provide further information on numbers, species and status of roosts. There are timing restrictions on these latter surveys and they can only be completed between May and September, preferably late May to July. Various guidelines on bat surveys have been published which mean that Natural England, CCW and Local Authorities usually require these surveys to comprise 3 visits to ensure a roost isn't missed. When planning a development it is important to ensure that bat surveys are scheduled early to avoid delays waiting for the appropriate survey season.
If bat roosts are found within your development it is usually simple to work around the bats, seeking to cause minimal disruption to a bat roost by careful timing of different elements of the work and ensuring the bats have somewhere to roost throughout and after the development. When a development requires a greater impact upon a bat roost a EPS (European Protected Species) or development licence can be obtained from Natural England or CCW to alter or move a bat roost to a different part of the development site, either temporarily during works, or permanently.
We have obtained numerous EPS development licences and are experienced in providing tailor-made mitigation and solutions suitable for any site.
Other surveys that are sometimes necessary include; Hibernation or Winter Bat Surveys which are undertaken between December to February to assess the status of bats in these sites; and Transact or Fixed Point surveys to assess bat habitat use and the impacts of propsed landscape changes, such as roads, pipelines, wind turbines, hedgerow removal and large development sites.
For a no obligation competitive quote for any bat issue use the email or phone number above or the contact form here.