Bats have been high on the agenda with a couple of our projects this week, which reminds us that the season for ecology surveys of several species is coming to an end for this year: bats, dormice, reptiles and even white-clawed crayfish are all getting ready to batten down the hatches for winter.
This can be a problem for Planning, as Local Authorities often aren’t willing to take a decision on applications where ecology might be important, without detailed survey reports.
Sometimes it’s possible to overcome these issues, either by convincing the Local Authority that there’s no need for a survey in a specific case – as we managed on one of our recent applications – or by arranging something called an ‘Extended Phase 1 Habitat Survey’ as part of a ‘Preliminary Ecological Appraisal’ (PEA). The latter (which can be undertaken all year round) can often persuade the Planners that that at least have enough information to take a decision on an application, leaving more detailed survey work and/or assessment of mitigation measures for later, before actual construction work starts on site.
Let us know if you’ve got a project where wee beasties might be a stumbling block!(add pictures of bats and something cuddly – a dormouse, perhaps?)