European Protected Species (EPS)
Bats are a protected species within the UK and Europe. All bats and their resting places are legally protected under Regulation 41 of The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 and Section 9 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. This level of protection means that not only are the species protected but also their roosts. It is an offence to damage, destroy or obstruct access to any place used by bats for shelter, whether they are present or not.
Bat Surveys for Planning Applications
As such, protected species are a standard consideration for planning applications, so surveys and assessment work must be completed before the application will be accepted. If protected species are not taken into consideration, the application will be turned down.
Stages of a Bat Survey
A bat survey involves an internal and external inspection of a building or tree to identify signs of bats (such as staining, droppings, scratch marks or insect remains) and to assess the potential use of the feature as a bat roost. An initial bat scoping survey aims to identify the likely risk of bats being present within the development site.
The second stage is to conduct an echolocation survey at dusk with the use of specialist bat detectors; this could also include a dawn survey using the same methods.
Bat Survey Season
Internal and external inspections of buildings and trees can be undertaken at any time in the year. However, echolocation surveys can only be undertaken between May and September. Quite often, two surveys are required with a sufficient time interval between the surveys.
Sources of Information
The REC team hold all of the necessary licences for carrying out bat surveys and working with bats in the UK.
For an informal chat about your individual ecological requirements, please give us a call on 0845 676 9303 or contact us online.