Preliminary Ecological Appraisals and Ecological Impact Assessments
These are often the first stage of the ecology survey process and can be undertaken at any time of year, although for more accurate results, grasslands are best surveyed in early summer and woodlands in spring.
They are designed to give an ecological appraisal of the site, indicating any areas of interest or potential for protected or notable species, as well as noting habitats and botany. We would also advise whether there were any invasive plant species within the development site, such as Japanese knotweed or Himalayan balsam, to enable early consideration such as avoidance measures or the need for eradication measures.
The completed Preliminary Ecological Appraisal would then be followed up by an update on our intial findings together with the issue of an Ecological Constraints and Opportunities Plan to enable you to consider and incorporate, where possible, any such measures at the design stage.
If there are no significant impacts expected as a result of the proposed development, the report can be completed as a Low Impact Ecological Impact Assessment Report that is more proportionate to the scale and impact of the development.
If the initial walkover highlights potential for protected species or notable habitats to be impacted by the proposals, further species surveys will be required (e.g. great crested newt surveys). Once the results of the further surveys are available, together with the proposed plans, the Ecological Impact Assessment Report can be completed. This report will likely detail sensitive timings of works, avoidance and mitigation measures, and potential ecological enhancements.
Either a Low Impact Ecological Impact Assessment report or an Ecological Impact Assessment report can be used to submit with your planing application.