The British Isles support a rich diversity of plants, vegetation communities and habitats. While many of our most important habitats are located within areas protected from development, such as Special Protection Areas (SPAs) or Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs), habitats protected by law and policy can also be present within development sites. Local planning authorities may require a specialist survey of certain habitats present within these sites to inform an assessment of their nature conservation value. They can also require specific surveys for rare or protected plant species to be undertaken where records indicate their possible presence on site.
Appropriate and timely habitat and vegetation surveys are the foundation of a sound ecological assessment. We offer the full range of habitat and vegetation surveys across all habitats in the UK. Our botanical specialists have a wealth of experience and can draw on a number of nationally recognised experts for critical groups.
The first step in undertaking a habitat or vegetation survey is normally a site visit by an appropriately skilled and trained botanist to conduct a survey in-line with the relevant methodology. Following the survey, we can produce a technical report that includes the methods and results of the survey, as well as a discussion of any legal or planning policy issues. If necessary, we can make recommendations for appropriate actions that can be taken to allow the development to progress.