Government announces further Sale of Military Sites – Wildlife Considerations

As reported by the BBC on 7 November 2016, a Government review of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) estate has concluded that ninety-one sites covering an area of approximately 32,500 acres will be released. This will result in running cost savings for the MoD, and free up land that has the potential to deliver up to 55,000 new homes.

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.

Using drones for ecology: moving towards best-practice guidance

In the third of a series of articles that looks at the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones for ecological survey, BSG Ecology Partner Steve Betts discusses guidelines for ecologists to ensure that this technology is used appropriately. BSG Ecology is now using drones to assist with site assessments, as they allow easy monitoring of areas that are otherwise difficult to access.

Thermal Imagery of Greater Horseshoe bats in Devon

BSG Ecology are currently working on several projects in Devon that involve the use of thermal imaging cameras to monitor greater horseshoe bats Rhinolophus ferrumequinum.  During a free evening one of our ecologists, Helen Simmons, took the opportunity to visit Berry Head National Nature Reserve & SSSI and film greater horseshoe bats emerging from a known roost.  The site is managed by the Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust where she was joined by the Trust’s Countryside Officer, Noel Hughes, who monitors them on a regular basis .

Natural England Great Crested Newt Low Impact Class Licence

The Great Crested Newt Low Impact Class Licence follows on from the Bat Low Impact Class Licence that was introduced by Natural England in 2015. The purpose of the Bat Low Impact Class Licence is to help reduce the licensing burden for projects which impact on low conservation status roosts supporting small numbers of bats of specific species.

Referendum Outcome: Has the Law Commission provided a post EU solution for Wildlife Legislation?

Following the referendum result, there is a high degree of uncertainty as to what the result means for the environment, not least with regard to effects on all the existing EU environmental regulations including legal provisions for wildlife. The current environmental legislation, national and local planning policy all remain applicable at this time and until greater clarity is provided by the Government , our view at BSG Ecology, is that it’s business as usual.

Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Ecology

In this, the first of a series of articles with regard to the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or drones), BSG Ecology Partner Steve Betts outlines some of the opportunities for ecologists that they present, but also outlines regulatory requirements that need to be considered ahead of commercial use.

Bats in Churches Workshop, Coventry

Katy Stiles, Senior Ecologist in our Derbyshire office, was recently invited to attend a consultation workshop on Bats in Churches Project. The event, held in Coventry in May 2016, was facilitated by the Arthur Rank Centre and organised by the Bats and Churches Project Team[1].