Designing Cities with Nature in Mind

Dr Peter Shepherd will be appearing on Tuesday 19th January 2016 as an expert panel member at a seminar organised by the Environmental Research Doctoral Training Partnership at the University of Oxford.

This is the first in the Grand Challenges Seminar Series, organised by a group of interdisciplinary PhD students at the University of Oxford, which is intended to “provide a forum to hear from experts and discuss the pressing issues and questions surrounding our environment”.

What are we looking for in a Graduate Ecologist?

We are regularly approached by students and recent graduates keen to understand the skills they need to pursue a career in consultancy work.

The following short article summarises, from our perspective, areas in which some basic experience is likely to be advantageous in securing an ecologist (entry-level) position.

Oxwich Marsh Bird Ringing Report 2015

Bird ringing has been conducted at Oxwich Marsh by Gower Ringing Group since February 2013.

This is co-ordinated by Owain Gabb, a licensed bird ringer and trainer based in our Swansea Office.

The marsh is managed by Natural Resources Wales, and habitats include open water, reed bed, wet woodland and species-rich grassland to the landward side of an extensive area of sand dunes and open sandy foreshore. The entire area is notified as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

Bat use of intertidal habitats in Swansea Bay

During 2015 BSG Ecology provided training and technical support to three Swansea University Master of Science students. This enabled them to complete research on the use of sandy and rocky shore habitats within Swansea Bay by bats. During the project BSG staff gave an initial briefing, assisted in survey design and on transect work, provided equipment and technical support in the use of Analook (for data analysis) and GIS.

Natural England Low Impact Bat Class Licence

BSG Ecology Partner Steven Betts is now a Registered Consultant, and is therefore able to rely on the Natural England Low Impact Bat Class Licence for sites that have been registered.

This aim of this new system is to provide a more efficient and proportionate approach to licensing for bats in certain circumstances. Natural England’s objective in introducing this licence is to provide a more streamlined service for developers that is appropriate to situations where effects on bats can be easily mitigated (but which nonetheless require a licence to derogate the law).

Bat Mist Netting Training, Wiltshire

Six ecologists from BSG Ecology joined Dr Ian Davidson-Watts on Tuesday 22 September for a training event that also contributed to a (Natural England licenced) long-term monitoring project at a protected hibernation and swarming site in Wiltshire.

Research into Creation of Open Mosaic Habitat for Invertebrates at a Brownfield Site in Peterborough

Under the heading of Achieving Sustainable Development, Paragraph 17 of the National Planning Policy Framework sets out twelve core land-use planning principles that underpin both plan-making and decision-taking. One of these is to ‘encourage the effective use of land by reusing land that has been previously developed (brownfield land), provided that it is not of high environmental value’. Understandably, ¹there is increasing pressure to develop brownfield sites. However, some of these are amongst our most important sites for wildlife, and in particular, invertebrates.

Rachel Taylor to address Welsh Bat Conference

Ecologist Rachel Taylor will present a talk to the Welsh Bat Conference at Stackpole, Pembrokeshire, on the subject of BSG Ecology’s Bat Migration Project (2012-2014).   Rachel’s talk is entitled “Bats on the Pembrokeshire Islands and an overview of BSG Ecology’s Bat Migration Project.”

All Energy conference 2015 – Glasgow 6 and 7 May 2015

BSG Ecology will be attending the UK’s largest Renewable Energy event at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, Glasgow on 6 and 7 May. Dr Peter Shepherd (BSG Partner), Greg Chamberlain (lead of our recently opened Glasgow office), and Helen Simmons (one of our Ecologists) will be present on both days.

Implementation of the British Standard (BS) 42020

BSG Ecology has taken steps to ensure that we incorporate guidance from BS42020:2013, the Code of Practice for Planning and Development, within the delivery of our day-to-day work.   The responsibility for the successful delivery of the British Standard guidance lies with all parties involved with ecology in the planning system.