Habitat and Vegetation Surveys
Phase I, Extended Phase I and Walkover Surveys
Phase I surveys are one of the most common ecological surveys carried out. Using standard methodology they identify and map the habitats on site and are usually extended to include detailed protected species recording as well as an assessment of the suitability of the habitats to support protected species. The surveys and reporting are relatively quick to complete and provide valuable information for submission with planning applications as well as identifying any constraints that may be associated with a particular project, which can help avoid costly delays at a later stage.
Walkover surveys are a quicker, scaled down version of a Phase I Habitat Survey. They identify potential constraints and are useful to inform possible acquisition of sites or potential developments. Walkover surveys are generally not considered comprehensive enough for submission with planning applications.
Habitats of particular interest may require a more detailed botanical survey. This is usually carried out to National Vegetation Classification (NVC) standards. These surveys not only identify the plant communities present but will also bring to light any rare or protected plant species on any given site.
Hedgerows are the subject of their own legal act and specific surveys may be required if hedgerows are to be impacted on by development. Hedgerow surveys are used to identify 'important' hedgerows in accordance with the Hedgerow Regulations (1997).
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