Commercial Bat and Bird Surveys

Founded in 2001, we specialise in commercial bat and bird surveys for a variety of clientele including the construction industry, householders, developers, councils and other environmental surveyors

We've worked with large organisations such as the NHS, RSPB and Scottish Power as well as smaller businesses, councils and domestic cases.

We carry out surveys of buildings, structures and trees and produce a report which can be used as part of a planning application. We advise on the felling of trees and any proposed building demolition work, along with licensed bat exclusions for domestic and other properties.

" Nocturne have a robust, no nonsense approach to getting work done. A very professional service. "

John Kennedy
LandLab

Why would you need a bat survey?

The most common reason for needing a bat survey is when you are developing or demolishing a property. As bats are a protected species (even when bats are not present but evidence of a roost is found) you need to take preventative measures to ensure your plans are not disturbing their roost. In most cases a survey will be required by your local planning department to make a ruling on your circumstances.

You need a bat survey if :

  • there is a known bat roost present in trees or buildings close to your development
  • bats have been seen in the area of your project
  • the site you are planning to develop may have wildlife value
  • the building you are planning to develop or demolish may have features that could support a bat roost

What's involved in a bat survey?

We begin with a "walkover", basically a preliminary review of your site. Thereafter, we monitor your site for activity.

The best time of year to carry out a survey is from April to October, with June and July being the optimum months. Outwith this time a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA) can be carried out to assess the site for suitability to support bats.

The time it takes to carry out a survey varies depending on the size and complexity of the site or building in question and the time of year the survey is carried out.

What happens if bats are found during the survey?

The information and recommendations will be included in the report for the project. We will then discuss the best way forward for the bats and the development. A licence will be required from Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) before any work can proceed. While finding bats may delay your project, it is unlikely development will prevent progression. In most circustances you will be asked to make allowances for the bats in terms of mitigation and compensation by modifying your plans.

Bird surveys

We have conducted bird surveys for smaller wind turbine developments. This usually involves undertaking a Phase One Habitat Survey and winter walkover bird surveys together with a scaled down common bird census during the breeding season, a desktop study of target species and local designated sites, and liaison with local conservation organisations and statutory bodies as required. We have also conducted nesting bird surveys prior to construction, development or demolition.

Under current wildlife legislation, all wild birds are protected, even common species like pigeons and sparrows. It is an offence to intentionally or recklessly:

  • Kill, injure or take a wild bird
  • Take, damage,destroy or interfere with a nest of any wild bird whilst it is in use or being built (or at any time for a nest habitually use by a bird listed in Schedule1A)
  • Obstruct or prevent any wild bird from using its nest
  • Take or destroy an egg of any wild bird

Penalties can be a fine of up to £5000 and/or 6 months in prison, even if the nests don't have any eggs or chicks present

Licences are available from SNH to allow specified people to carry out actions that could otherwise constitute an offence. If you are planning any activities that could affect wild birds or the places they use, you are obliged to comply with the law. For more information, refer to the SNH licensing and bird pages.

If you are interested in this aspect of work please contact us.

" We appointed Nocturne to carry out bat and bird surveys ahead of a repairs project. They provided a personal service and we benefitted from the consistency of working with Catriona, personally, throughout the project. "

Dawn Preston
Simpson & Brown Architects

Some of our clients

  • Dumfries House
  • EEG
  • East Dunbartonshire Council
  • Lawrence Environmental Consultancy
  • Landlab Ltd
  • McInnes & Gardener Architects
  • Mike Hyde Planning
  • North Lanarkshire Council
  • North Ayrshire Council
  • NHS
  • Rhubard & Blue Architects
  • Robert Ryan Homes Ltd
  • Scottish Power
  • Simpson & Brown Architects
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