At a time that most ecological consultants are out undertaking great crested newt surveys and developers are squeezing in last minute commissions for 2016 the BBC News and Ecosulis are also considering what the future holds for this European Protected Species (EPS).
Sara King, Senior Ecological Consultant for Ecosulis, was interviewed by BBC News regarding great crested newt in the context of the current consultation being undertake by Natural England. The consultation, which is open until 7 April 2016, aims to make the current licensing system more flexible and strategic, allowing developers and councils the options of reducing the amount of potential survey work and associated mitigation necessary to clear a development site of great crested newts.
The consultation also covers other EPS, such as bats, and the aim is:
- To allow greater flexibility on decisions to exclude or relocate EPS from development sites.
- To allow greater flexibility on the location of newly created habitats that compensate for habitats that will be lost.
- To allow EPS to have access to temporary habitats that will be developed at a later date.
- To allow appropriate and relevant surveys to be carried out where the impacts of development can be confidently predicted.
The full article relating to the proposed species rule change can be read on the BBC News Science & Environment pages here.
Have your voice heard by responding to the consultation: Natural England European Protected Species Licence Consultation
Natural Englands current requirements relating to great crested newt surveys and mitigation for development projects is outlined on their website, here.
Or alternatively view our in-house calendar and resources: http://www.ecosulis.co.uk/page/great-crested-newt