Acer Ecology’s fully licensed ecologists recently undertook a Great Crested Newt (GCN) survey at a site in Neath Port Talbot.
It is really important to identify the presence of great crested newts as early as you can in the planning process as this can help reduce costly delays. Surveys are seasonally constrained to the period mid-March to mid-June. This is because GCN can be found in their breeding ponds. Outside of these months surveys can be done using drift fencing and pitfall traps to help determine their presence in terrestrial habitats.
GCN are fully protected under UK and European law and are frequently encountered on development sites. It is an offence to kill, capture, or disturb them, or to damage or destroy their ponds. This protection extends to their habitats and it is generally assumed that the species might be present in terrestrial habitats up to 500m of a breeding pond, depending on habitat quality, connectivity and population size.
A combination of survey techniques were used by our specialists. These include bottle trapping, torching, egg searches and refugia searches. No GCN were found to be using the body of water at the site. But, due to the close proximity of high quality terrestrial GCN habitat and the existence of published records of GCN near to the site, we recommended precautionary measures to make sure that our client’s project was able to progress through the planning process with no difficulties.
Our licensed great crested newt specialists are able to provide GCN surveys throughout Wales, including Neath, Abveravon, Clyne, Glynneath, Llandarcy, Onllwyn, Pontardawe, Rhos, and Tonna. We are experienced in surveying, European Protected Species licensing, as well as mitigation design and implementation.
For more information about great crested newt surveys, or any of our other ecological services, please call us on 02920 650331, or email us at email@example.com.
Further information about great crested newts can be found in our articles Get The “Newt” Know How On Great Crested Newt Surveys, Great Crested Newts – How We Can Help You and A Year in the Life of a Great Crested Newt.