BSG Ecology is leading the way in the effective use of thermal imagery as an essential tool in the delivery of a complete ecological consultancy service. We own several high-specification TI cameras and our staff are professionally trained in their use. This includes complex post-processing of radiometric data which reveals more meaningful information than simple visual interpretation.
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.
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.
BSG Ecology recently attended two events in London focussing on biodiversity, planning and the environment. There are many changes taking place in this area of our work and these events proved useful in keeping us up to date on current thinking and practice and on potential future changes to how biodiversity is addressed through the planning system.
Invertebrates are by far the most biodiverse organisms in our ecosystems but receive proportionately little legal protection or conservation priority when compared to more widely-studied groups such as mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles.
The benefits of and requirement for enhanced sustainability within developments is now firmly embedded in local and national planning policy in Scotland. Whilst the provision of ‘Blue-Green Infrastructure¹ can be viewed as a hindrance, as it takes up land with a commercial value, it should also be viewed as an opportunity, potentially adding value to the wider development.
On 17 March 2016, Holyrood, the seat of the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, will host an event organised by the “Living Cities Consortium” directed at major stakeholders involved in house building, construction, public realm improvements and delivery of new development across the public, private, voluntary and social enterprise sectors. The purpose of this event is to highlight the range of opportunities that Blue-Green Infrastructure can provide.
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).
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.
Scape is a public sector owned built environment specialist, offering a full range of national frameworks and innovative design solutions. We are very pleased to report that for the last 18 months BSG Ecology has been successfully working with Atkins Faithful + Gould as a second-tier specialist Scape supplier.
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.”