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Nesting Bird Survey

Nesting Bird Survey

Protected under the 1981 Wildlife and Countryside Act, nesting birds can also be protected at the European level in Special Protection Areas (SPA) for key bird species such as stone curlew, woodlark and nightjar.

Before any demolition or vegetation clearance can begin, a nesting bird survey should be carried out by experienced ecologists. At agb Environmental our team are licensed for all ecology surveys, including more unusual services such as tree climbing bat surveys and site management/clearance, to ensure an all-round assessment for a successful application to be sent to the LPAs.

If it is proven that nesting birds can’t be avoided through appropriate timing of site clearance, a nesting bird survey will need to be carried out before work can begin. If your development is within impact of an SPA, the nesting bird survey must assess the possibility that the key birds will be affected and whether this will be through loss of habitat or an increase number of visitors to these habitats. A nesting bird survey should be carried out between March and August. A single visit, preferably at dawn before work begins, is required. And for key habitats, breeding bird surveys may also be required, involving repeat visits between March and June.

During a nesting bird survey, if an active nest is identified within your development’s clearance zone, an exclusion zone must be observed until the young birds have fledged. Compensatory land provision, and/or habitat management could occur if the nesting bird survey reveals a rare bird is using your site.

With nesting bird surveys often a condition of gaining planning consent, they are an essential part of the development process. For further information about nesting bird surveys, contact Alex Brearley on 01638 663226.