Help, I’ve found a … !
Depending on the time of the year, members of the public may come in to contact with injured wildlife. UES are an Ecological Consultancy, and whilst we are always happy to provide general advice to members of the public, we do not have the facilities or expertise for treating injured animals. Luckily, there are many options available to help our native wildlife when you think they are in danger.
Bats are more likely encountered in the summer, particularly from May to September, and people may find them in their homes or out during the day, which is often a sign the bat may need your help. The Bat Conservation Trust run the National Bat Helpline in the summer and will provide advice on what to do if you’ve found a bat. See this page for more information: Help I’ve found a bat!
Alternatively, your local bat group is often a great source of advice and is run by volunteers and bat carers. Search for your local bat group (they usually operate at a county level) and they are likely to be able to provide you with some great advice and may even have a network of carers who can come and advise and help you.
Great crested newt
Great crested newts are one of three native newt species in the UK, with the others being the smooth newt and the palmate newt. Since newts are small creatures, sadly there’s generally not a lot that can be done if you find an injured newt. However, do contact the Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust (ARC), who may be able to help you. You can also see their FAQ page here: Newts FAQs.
Birds, hedgehogs and other wildlife
The RSPCA (England and Wales), SSPCA (Scotland) and USPCA (Northern Ireland) are the national charities that help and provide advise regarding injured wildlife. You might also find it useful to find and contact your local rescue centre at Help Wildlife. There are also other charities that may be able to provide advice such as the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, Badger Trust, or The Owls Trust, amogst many others.
I’m worried a wildlife crime is being committed
Wildlife crimes must be reported to the police. Follow this link to find out how to report wildlife crimes: Wildlife crime and how to report it.
If you are worried that a local development is committing a wildlife crime, it’s always best to check your local planning portal as there may be licenses in place that permit certain works. Find your Local Planning Authority (LPA) by entering your post code in to the following website: Find your LPA. Once you’ve found your LPA, you can search for specific applications using their planning portal and you can see all documents relating to the development and check if they have permission to carry out the works.
What if I just want to report a sighting?
Fantastic! Britain is quite unique with regard to the number of people who record wildlife. Your records can help to protect rare species in your area, or they might even be used in scientific research. Citizen Science projects are increasingly being used to help researchers and policy makers conserve our fauna and flora.
If you have found a bat, your local bat group will be very thankful for submitting your record or, if you have found a great crested newt or other amphibian, you can also report these through ARC and their Record Pool.
Another great option is to go directly to your Local Environmental Record Centre (LERC). LERCs are non-profit organisations that collect and manage information on the natural environment. This information can then be accessed by a range of audiences from developers and ecologists to the general public and researchers. Find your LERC by following this link: Find Your LERC.