It is important to conduct bird surveys as all birds and their nests while being occupied or built are protected by the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). This applies to all bird species, common or rare.

Some species are given further protection and listed under Schedule 1, Part I of the Act. These include species like barn owls, kingfishers, and little-ringed plovers, which are given additional protection from disturbance while breeding. This could mean a buffer zone is required between any work and the nest to avoid any disturbance.

In most cases, this means avoiding site clearance works during the breeding bird season (March to August, inclusive) or having an ecologist undertake a pre-clearance check for active nests.

For potentially higher impact projects, such as wind farms, more complex surveys can be required, such as:

  • Vantage point surveys (VPS),
  • Breeding bird transects or,
  • Wintering bird surveys.

Our expertise

ADAS ornithologists can undertake various other bird surveys, including point counts, surveys using common bird census (CBC) methodology, Wetland Bird Surveys (WeBS) and Brown and Shepherd methodology surveys for upland birds.

We have experienced ornithologists located across the country ready to help with your project. Our robust and pragmatic solutions for developments meet the Wildlife and Countryside Act, the EIA Directive, the Habitats Directive and local and national planning policy requirements.

Contact James Packer to discuss how we can help you.