Posts Tagged ‘Protected species’

Badgering badgers

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Leicester Magistrates’ Court found a landowner guilty of interfering with a badger sett by damaging and obstructing it.

The landowner had contractors dump soil and rubble on an area around the badger sett, which blocked and damaged it.

The landowner had previously contacted Natural England asking for permission to remove the sett, however Natural England had refused the license as it was unclear who would be undertaking the works.

The landowner was fined £6,215 in total and no badgers were harmed by the landowner’s actions.

Penalties for offences relating to badgers include fines of up to £5,000 plus up to six months imprisonment for each illegal sett interference, badger injury or death.

An extended phase one habitat survey will assess the likely presence of badgers and other protected species and prevent such problems arising. A targeted badger scoping survey will identify any evidence of badger presence on site allowing the landowner to avoid penalties.

UESis an ecological consultancy based in Cheshire who are experts in protected species issues relating to planning and development.

Badgers inherit their setts, some setts can be centuries old

United Environmental Services are now ISO 9001 certified

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

As a company we always strive to ensure that the services we offer are high quality and good value. We decided to work towards ISO 9001 certification to further improve the way that we operate and hopefully offer a higher quality service to our customers.

Working towards ISO 9001 certification has meant that we have had to look at every aspect of the business with a critical eye in order to identify any improvements which could be made. We have looked at every area of the business from the point of view of our customers and internally and set up a framework which will help us to continually improve the service we offer.

Some of the areas which we covered are; Customer contact and feedback, staff training, professional insurances, IT systems and data security, compliance with legislation and professional licensing.

We hope that this will enable us to continually improve the way in which we work, and enable our clients to tell us if there is anything we could be doing better.

Bat Surveys in Derbyshire and the peak district National Park

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Bat Surveys in Derbyshire

Bat surveys can be undertaken in Derbyshire and the Derbyshire Peak District National Park at most times of the year. Bats are most active in Derbyshire during the spring and summer months. Bat activity surveys can only be carried out in Derbyshire at these times of year. At other times of year it is possible to carry out bat scoping surveys of buildings, and bat scoping surveys of trees and other structures which may support roosting bats. If signs of use by bats or features which could support roosting bats are found, then it will be necessary to complete bat activity surveys during the spring or summer. In Derbyshire many bat surveys are carried out on barns and farm buildings. This is in order to gain planning permission. In the Derbyshire Peak District National Park Barn conversions are one of the most common causes of loss of bat habitat which is why local planning authorities insist on bat surveys prior to planning permission being granted. There are several species of bat which are resident in Derbyshire. These include Noctule bat, common pipistrelle bat, soprano pipistrelle bat, Nathusius’ pipistrelle bat, Daubentons’ bat, Whiskered bat, Brandt’s’ bat. United Environmental Services use several pieces of high tech equipment to find bats during a bat survey. These include bat boxes which can detect the echolocation calls of bats and the Anabat system which detects bat echolocation calls and displays them visually on a PDA screen which makes recording of the bat calls and identification of the bat species much more accurate.

United Environmental Services carry out surveys across Derbyshire. The surveys which are carried out in Derbyshire 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 Derbyshire 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 Derbyshire.

Contact us for more details

Signs of water voles found near Porthmadog, North Wales

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

UES were commisioned for an extended phase 1 habitat survey of a site north of Porthmadog. The desk study and record search revealed no records on the site, but did have several records of Lesser horseshoe bats within 1km of the site boundary.

The site itself both from the record search and from aerial photography looked fairly unremarkable as it was in a packet of land between a busy road and a railway line and had two distinct habitat types. The western end of site was high ground with lots of exposed rock. The variety of flora present suggested it was a species rich grassland as did the numerous ant mounds made by yellow meadow ants (lasius flavus). Several bird species were heard and seen around the site area including Wheatear, Grasshopper warbler and willow warbler. The eastern half of the site was marshy grassland dominated by soft rush, with an artificial drainage channel cutting through it from north to south. There were no rocks or raised areas in the watercourse and it was very smooth and uniform on the bottom suggesting that it had been quite recently cleared. The water was around 1m deep and running slowly from south to north. Toby checked the watercourse for signs of watervole and was surprised to find several latrines and burrows along the banks of the drain.   The sites were recorded with GPS references and photographs. The CCW (Countryside Council for Wales) and local record centre (COFNOD) were notified as was the developer. The water vole is now fully protected under Section 9 of The Wildlife and Countryside act 1981 (as amended) which makes illegal any action which might

  • Intentionally kill, injure or take water voles
  • posess or control live or dead water voles or their derivatives
  • Intentionally or recklessly damage destroy or obstruct access to any structure or place used by water voles

The developer was initially annoyed because of the affect the find would have on the project. But realised that the survey which had taken place very early in the planning stages of the development, had saved the company money in the long run.

The early survey had allowed them to properly assess the cost of the development before the start of work, rather than finding the water voles mid-project, and having to stop work redesign the plans and potentially have damaged or destroyed the habitat of a species which is already in serious decline.