Archive for February, 2010

Bat girl does fashion show!

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

Clothing designer Ada Zanditon has released a new range on the catwalks of London. The range of clothing called Echolocation is inspired by bats and their movements.

Ada explains “I became fascinated by a bat’s ability navigate the night sky through echolocation.  We have these remarkable animals on our doorstep that desperately need our help; I want this collection to celebrate the amazing abilities of these unique mammals.  Bringing bats and fashion together changes the way people think about bats and the fashion industry.”

Strange but true.

The full story is available on the Bat Conservation Trust website

http://www.bats.org.uk/news.php/70/bats_on_the_catwalk

details of the collection can be found at Ada Zanditons website

http://www.adaz.co.uk

UES prepare for another busy year of protected species surveys

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

Well it’s been a long cold winter and we’ve all had a good rest but spring is just around the corner and we are gearing up for another busy year.  Here are a few of the projects we are currently working on.

Cheshire: bats and great crested newts

We are currently in the planning stages of a large project in Wilmslow, Cheshire. The plans involve bat surveys (some of which we did last year), European protected species licensing, the planning and construction of a large bat barn prior to the start of development. Brown long eared bats, pipistrelles and myotis species were found during the bat surveys so the barn will be designed with these species in mind. The roost which is in place is currently being monitored using an anabat remote bat detector and several dataloggers to record temperature and humidity data. Whiskered bats and Brandt’s bats are present at the bat barns which were built for Manchester airport, only a few miles away. The project also requires great crested newt surveys on ponds in and around the site footprint. If great crested newts are found then a mitigation plan will have to be designed and an EPS licence application submitted to Natural England.

Merseyside: bats, great crested newts, water vole, barn owls

A golf course development on Merseyside which United Environmental Services were involved in last year still has work to be done as a condition of the licence. This will involve de-silting the ponds to improve their quality for great crested newts, and amphibians in general. The fitting of a large number of  bat boxes around the site. The fitting of a number of bird boxes. Management of the woodlands. Management of the watercourse which has water voles resident. As a result of the great crested newt trapping scheme last year the on site ponds must also be monitored for the next 5 years.

Cambridgeshire: great crested newts, bats, reptiles and red kites

We also have great crested newt monitoring contracts at a site in Cambridgeshire not far from Stamford in Lincolnshire. The site was trapped out in 2008 and over 500 great crested newts relocated to new ponds. The site is rich in many species of wildlife and sits next to a SSSI woodland. Red kites are nesting close to the site and can often be seen hunting close by. Several species of reptiles were found during the trapping including, grass snake, slow worm and common lizard.

Staffordshire: bat monitoring

Bat monitoring is ongoing  at the site of a former mill in Tunstall near Stoke on Trent in Staffordshire after a small number of pipistrelle bats were found to be using one of the buildings prior to demolition. Monitoring work will carry on until the new buildings have been built with replacement bat roosts built into the fabric of the buildings.

Phase 1 Habitat surveys in Leicestershire

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

Phase 1 habitat surveys can be carried out in Leicestershire at any time of year however the optimum time of year to carry out habitat surveys is during the spring and summer months when a more complete range of Leicestershire’s flora and fauna are active. Phase 1 habitat surveys are used to catalogue the different types of habitat which are found in a given area. The results of the phase 1 habitat survey can then be used to assess the impacts of a development on an area and if necessary to specify if any further survey work is required. An example of this would be if a badger sett was found inside or close to the development area then badger surveys would be recommended, similarly if an area of habitat was found which was suitable for use by breeding birds then potentially breeding bird surveys would have to be completed prior to the start of works. Leicestershire has a variety of different habitat types which support a range of different species, from woodlands to urban areas. Phase 1 habitat surveys are usually required prior to the start of development work and can save time as any potential issues with protected species or protected habitats will be highlighted early in the development.

United Environmental Services carry out surveys across Leicestershire. The surveys which are carried out in Leicestershire include great crested newt surveys, bat surveys, Phase 1 habitat surveys, breeding bird surveys, water vole surveys and a full range of environmental surveys. United Environmental Services also offer landscape design and garden design services in Leicestershire and can provide the materials and implementation work if required. We have a team of experienced surveyors, landscape architects and ground workers who work to a high standard across Leicestershire.

United Environmental Services are experienced in a wide range of ecological survey work, contact us for more information.

Great Crested Newt Surveys in Gwynedd

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

Great crested newt surveys can be carried out in Gwynedd during spring and early summer. Pond surveys for great crested newts are undertaken at a time of year when the great crested newt population returns to the pond to breed. Great crested newt pond surveys have to be carried out to strict guidelines and so the people undertaking them must be properly trained, licensed and experienced to carry out great crested newt pond surveys. Gwynedd has many ponds and wet areas which are suitable for great crested newts. Any action which has the potential to disturb great crested newts or their habitats must be preceded by great crested newt surveys of the pond or area, to ensure that no great crested newts are disturbed. United Environmental Services have experienced and appropriately licensed staff that can carry out great crested newt surveys in Gwynedd. At times of year when great crested newts are not in the ponds, other survey methods can be employed. The main technique used is the habitat suitability index which is an accepted method of assessing a habitat for its suitability for use by great crested newts.

United Environmental Services carry out surveys across Gwynedd. The surveys which are carried out in Gwynedd include great crested newt surveys, bat surveys, Phase 1 habitat surveys, breeding bird surveys, water vole surveys and a full range of environmental surveys. United Environmental Services also offer landscape design and garden design services in Gwynedd and can provide the materials and implementation work if required. We have a team of experienced surveyors, landscape architects and ground workers who work to a high standard across Gwynedd.

Greater Horseshoe bats dining in Devon Hedgerows

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

A survey which involved tagging and radio tracking a group of greater horseshoe bats in Devon has revealed some interesting behaviours. The study conducted by the East Devon Area of Natural Beauty partnership followed 12 bats in the Branscombe area. Some male bats travelled as far as Sidmouth to feed.

The male bats travelled further than the female bats, possibly because the females were pregnant during the survey. Bats follow features such as hedgerows and tree lines to navigate, and take flies and moths on the wing.

The partnership is working to improve the hedgerows and other habitat corridors in order to provide a better quality of habitat for bats.

Greater Horseshoe bats are among the most highly protected of our British bat species. The main population of greater horseshoe bats  is in the Southwest of England.

For the full story see the BBC website

http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/devon/hi/people_and_places/nature/newsid_8504000/8504927.stm

East Devon Area of Natural Beauty website

http://www.eastdevonaonb.org.uk/

Great Crested Newt Surveys in Shropshire

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

Great Crested Newt Surveys in Shropshire

Great crested newt surveys can be carried out in Shropshire during spring and early summer. Pond surveys for great crested newts are undertaken at a time of year when the great crested newt population returns to the pond to breed. Great crested newt pond surveys have to be carried out to strict guidelines and so the people undertaking them must be properly trained, licensed and experienced to carry out great crested newt pond surveys. Shropshire has many ponds and wet areas which are suitable for great crested newts. Any action which has the potential to disturb great crested newts or their habitats must be preceded by great crested newt surveys of the pond or area, to ensure that no great crested newts are disturbed. United Environmental Services have experienced and appropriately licensed staff that can carry out great crested newt surveys in Shropshire. At times of year when great crested newts are not in the ponds, other survey methods can be employed. The main technique used is the habitat suitability index which is an accepted method of assessing a habitat for its suitability for use by great crested newts.

United Environmental Services carry out surveys across Shropshire. The surveys which are carried out in Shropshire include great crested newt surveys, bat surveys, Phase 1 habitat surveys, breeding bird surveys, water vole surveys and a full range of environmental surveys. United Environmental Services also offer landscape design and garden design services in Shropshire and can provide the materials and implementation work if required. We have a team of experienced surveyors, landscape architects and ground workers who work to a high standard across Shropshire.

Natural England are supporting the 2010 international year of biodiversity

Tuesday, February 9th, 2010

Natural England

Natural England are supporting the 2010 international year of biodiversity by highlighting key species which they believe actions taken this year could result in the survival and extinction of the species.

This weeks featured species is the brown hare, which surveys have shown to be in decline over recent decades. The brown hare can be found all over the UK but is more common in Eastern and Southern England than it is in the North or North west.

Natural England’s website

http://www.naturalengland.org.uk/ourwork/conservation/biodiversity/biodiversityislife/default.aspx

Arkive website

http://www.arkive.org/brown-hare/lepus-europaeus/info.html


Natural England granted wider powers to enforce breaches of wildlife legislation

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

Natural England

Flexibility

Defra have announced that Natural England will be granted more flexible powers to enforce breaches of wildlife legislation. The legislation applies to certain protected species such as the great crested newt, water vole, badgers and natterjack toads. The legislation also applies to all of our resident bat species.

Formerley Natural England had only three options available, these were

  • issue of warning letters
  • issue of caution
  • full criminal prosecution

New powers

Under the new powers regulators will be able to match the strength of the sanction to the seriousness of the offence and also:

  • Halt illegal activities
  • order the restoration of environmental damage
  • impose fines where legislation has been breached

Further information can be found on Natural Englands website by following the link below

http://www.naturalengland.org.uk/about_us/news/2010/030210.aspx