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Winter Ecological Surveys


The main survey season for habitats and protected species is over, but there are some surveys that can be carried out over the winter period. Some surveys need to be carried out over the winter, such as for hibernating bats, wintering birds and badgers. You can keep track of the ecology survey season by requesting an electronic copy of our Ecology Survey Calendar here: https://www.alyneecology.co.uk/. To avoid any unnecessary delays to your project, these are the surveys that we can help you with over the winter:

The following surveys can only be carried out during the winter period, so the best time for you to organise these surveys, if required, is now.


Bat Winter Hibernation Surveys

Bat winter hibernation surveys need to be carried out in December, January and February. It is important to get these surveys booked in now to avoid delays to your project. At aLyne Ecology, we have several ecologists who have the necessary skills, experience and Natural England survey licence, to carry out this type of survey. More information about bat winter hibernation surveys can be found here: https://www.alyneecology.co.uk/bats.


Winter Bird Surveys

Wintering bird surveys need to be carried out from September to March. A wintering bird survey is necessary if a development site contains habitats that could potentially be used by wintering bird species, such as farmlands and wetlands.


Preliminary Badger Surveys

February and March are the optimal time to undertake preliminary badger surveys, when dense vegetation has died back. A preliminary badger survey may be necessary if badgers and their setts are potentially present on a development site. If a badger sett is present, badger monitoring surveys may be needed. More information about badger surveys can be found here: https://www.alyneecology.co.uk/badgers.


There are some surveys, which can be carried out at any time of year, including the winter period, so you do not need to wait until the spring to commission these surveys.

Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA)

The optimal time of year to conducts PEAs is from April to September, to include the flowing plant season. PEAs can be conducted during the winter if they are being undertaken by experienced ecologists. Here at aLyne Ecology we have ecologists with over 20 years’ experience, who are confident to conduct PEAs at any time of year.


Preliminary Inspection for Bats (PIB)

If a project involves works to a building, a PIB will be required. Although PIBs are best carried out when bats are present (May to September), they can be carried out at any time of year. If signs of bats are found or a building has potential to support roosting bats, further survey for bats will be required from May to September. More information about bat surveys can be found here: https://www.alyneecology.co.uk/bats.


European Protected Species Licences (EPSLs)

EPSLs are necessary when protected species have been found to be present on a development site, for instance, if bats are found to be roosting in a building. EPSLs can be prepared over the winter period, but implementation is best carried out from September to October and April to May.


If you wish to be updated on the survey season, then please complete the ‘Keep Updated’ section on our website here: https://www.alyneecology.co.uk/.

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