It’s a well-deserved climb for Rachel!

We are honoured to be promoting one of our long-standing team members Rachel McNally to a full-time Ecologist as of June. Rachel is a truly valuable and hardworking member of the team and offers a wealth of ecology knowledge and experience. She is an absolute joy to have in the team and we are so pleased with the news… Congratulations Rachel!

The bat survey season is underway!

The nights are getting warmer and sunsets are getting later, which can only mean one thing – the bat survey season is underway! The team at Inspired Ecology have been out and about in Lincolnshire and Cambridgeshire to conduct our first evening emergence surveys of the season, and it’s great to be back at it!

Experienced staff at Inspired Ecology Ltd. can conduct evening emergence and dawn re-entry surveys. We can also undertake extended remote Anabat detector surveys. Contact us today to discuss your project and its bat survey requirements.

Welcoming Helen to the team

Inspired Ecology are thrilled to be welcoming a new Principal Ecologist, Helen Archer, to the team! Helen has ten years’ experience working as an ecologist within large, multi-disciplinary environmental consultancies. She has a Bachelors degree in Environmental Conservation and Countryside Management and holds a Natural England Bat Survey Licence. You can read more about Helen on her profile.

We’re so pleased that Helen has decided to join us here at Inspired Ecology, and are excited to work with her as we enter the summer survey season. If you think that your project may require ecological surveys this summer, then contact us now for more information and a quote!

Coronavirus working practices update

Following recent developments and government advice, we would like to reassure you that we are taking measures to protect our clients, staff and their families from coronavirus. In addition to government advice, we have updated our working practices to follow the advice from the leading industry body for our profession, the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM). On 7th May 2020, CIEEM published a guidance document on how to safely conduct ecological surveys and assessments during the Covid-19 outbreak, available here

We will be reviewing survey appointments on a case-by-case basis, however there are many circumstances under which it will not be possible for us to complete surveys. We can only complete work on site where we are certain that we are able to do so without putting our staff or anyone on site at unnecessary risk.

In the meantime, our staff are still working from home, so are able to provide quotes for any future survey work, with a view to completing these surveys as soon as it is safe to do so. As we approach what is usually our busiest time of year, we are mindful that this is an ever-changing situation and are keeping a close watch on both government and CIEEM advice and will keep this page updated with our response. We ask that you get in touch as soon as possible to discuss your survey requirements for the season so that we can prepare to undertake survey work when restrictions are lifted.

We hope that all of our clients remain safe and well during this difficult time.

This article was last updated on 12th May 2020.

West Sussex bat trapping

Over the summer, the Inspired Ecology team travelled down to West Sussex to assist AECOM with bat trapping surveys. Between July and September, surveys were conducted at three different sites, with one at each site during each month.

 

Harp traps, so called because they look remarkably similar to a harp when set up, were the most successful at catching bats, though mist nets also managed to catch a small number of bats. Once caught, the team identified the species, took wing measurements and weighed the bats, before releasing them again.

 

Numerous different species were recorded by the team, including common pipistrelle, soprano pipistrelle, brown long-eared bat, Natterer’s bat, whiskered bat and noctule. The most exciting catch of the summer was reserved for Bechstein’s bat however. This species is one of the UK’s rarest bats and is found in just a small number of places in the south of England and Wales, making it a very important and special find for the project and for UK bat conservation!

’tis the season…

…for bat hibernation checks!

The bat activity survey season may be finished for the year, but the team at Scarborough Nixon Associates Ltd will be carrying out hibernation surveys for bats throughout December, January and February.

Sites to be surveyed include Tattershall Carrs, a Woodland Trust site, recently seen on BBC Countryfile! Over the last couple of years, Ian Nixon has led a project to transform some of the Stanton shelters and remaining wartime structures within the woodland to provide winter roosting features for bats. The features include bat boxes and the specially designed Lincolnshire Bat Brick. These features have now been in place for 18 months, and hibernation surveys in winter 2015/2016 showed that the structures were being used by small numbers of bats, including brown long-eared and Natterer’s. This winter, further hibernation surveys will take place to monitor the population of hibernating bats within the woodland, and all data will be submitted to Bat Conservation Trust as part of the National Bat Monitoring Programme.

The photo’s show Ian with the Countryfile team filming in the bunkers.

Water vole update

In January 2016, a class licence (CL31) was introduced to “intentionally damage or destroy water vole burrows and to disturb by displacing water voles occupying burrows before carrying out lawful development works”. Scarborough Nixon Associates Ltd are pleased to announce that they have completed the licensing process with Natural England and are registered to use the class licence to carry out water vole displacement work.

Scarborough Nixon Associates Ltd offer water vole surveys both as part of our general walkover surveys and ecological assessments and also as focused species specific surveys, for a range of clients including private developers, internal drainage boards and The Environment Agency. All our survey work and water vole displacement work is undertaken by experienced ecologists in accordance with the latest industry guidelines, published in The Water Vole Mitigation Handbook (Dean et al. 2016).