If you believe that bats could be present on your property or site, it would be advisable to book a bat survey to avoid disturbing the species and prevent issues with gaining planning permission. Fortunately, we have ecological consultants based in the North West to conduct professional bat surveys in all applicable areas.
North West ecology
The North West region of England contains five counties, and within each county is an extensive selection of notable towns and cities. Cheshire has a wide variety of towns including Alderley Edge, Chester, Crewe and Warrington, and Cumbria boasts of stunning landscapes, particularly in the Lake District. In terms of cities, Greater Manchester and Merseyside account for the cities of Manchester and Liverpool respectively, as well as a vast number of popular urban towns. Likewise, Lancashire has many towns, such as Blackburn, Blackpool, Burnley and Preston.
With so many rural areas in the North West of England, various bat species are given a broad range of opportunities to roost in barns, bridges, churches, garages, houses, sheds and any other property that they can infiltrate to create a suitable habitat.
Bat species in the North West of England
Multiple species of bat have been spotted in various towns and cities across Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside, indicating that they are roosting and reproducing in the North West of England.
Below, we have highlighted the bat species identified in each county:
Brandt’s bat, Brown long-eared bat, Daubenton’s bat, Leisler’s bat, Natterer’s bat, Noctule bat, Pipistrelle bat, Serotine bat, Whiskered bat.
Brandt’s bat, Brown long-eared bat, Daubenton’s bat, Natterer’s bat, Noctule bat, Pipistrelle bat, Whiskered bat.
Brandt’s bat, Daubenton’s bat, Noctule bat, Pipistrelle, Whiskered bat.
Brandt’s bat, Brown long-eared bat, Daubenton’s bat, Pipistrelle bat, Natterer’s bat, Noctule bat, Whiskered bat.
Brandt’s bat, Daubenton’s bat, Noctule bat, Pipistrelle bat, Whiskered bat.
Bats are protected under UK and European legislation, making it a legal offence to disturb or harm them. As a result, if you are planning a development project that could impact inhabiting bats, you should seek expert guidance on suitable next steps by arranging a bat survey with a qualified ecologist.
The BERS assessment
During a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA), an ecologist will analyse the site for evidence of protected species and plants. If the findings indicate that bats are present on the site, they will need to carry out a Preliminary Roost Assessment (PRA) to determine the specific locations and species of bats on the site.
Also known as a scoping survey, a PRA will also involve the ecologist speaking to the developer to understand what the development project will entail before using this information to work out if it will disturb the bats. Evidence of bats could include droppings or the remains of prey, as well as any signs that the property could house bats now or in the future.
If the ecologist believes that bats on the site could be impacted by the development, they will conduct a Bat Emergence and Re-Entry Survey (BERS). Due to the hibernation habits of bats, BERS are carried out between May and September, and the process of the assessment involves monitoring bats entering and leaving the area at dusk or dawn over multiple visits to the site.
By conducting the survey more than once, the ecologist can acquire more information and identify if multiple species are present. A report will then be created based on the results of the survey, allowing the ecologist to inform the developer of their findings alongside recommendations for progressing the development despite the presence of bats.
Our bat surveyors
For anyone developing a property in the North West, it would be strongly advisable to book a bat survey if bats are present or simply if you want to check as a precaution. Not only will it give you peace of mind during your development project, but it will also prevent problems further down the line and avoid any potential issues with harming the species or breaching UK legislation.
Our ecological consultants are qualified to degree-level and situated across the country, including in every county of the North West. If you need a bat survey or would like to enquire, speak to one of our team of experts over the phone at 0808 169 6956 or receive a free quote by filling out the form above.