0333 006 2524 contact@aval-group.co.uk

Bat Surveys for Planning and Development

Bat surveys are a key step in the planning process for developments that may impact bat habitats. They help to identify the presence of bats, their roosts, and the potential effects of a proposed development on these nocturnal creatures. This allows the implementation of mitigation in a timely manner to avoid any unnecessary delay during the planning process. 

Aval UK Bat Survey Consultants are experts in this field. We provide bat surveys and conservation advice to help your project comply with the law and protect bats. Our surveys are thorough, and our advice is focused on conservation and supporting our client in getting the planning permission as swiftly as possible, ensuring legal requirements are met. 

Our reports inform property owners, developers, conservationists, and local planning authorities about the presence or absence of bats within a surveyed development. The report also proposes mitigation measures if any bats are found to be present.

Free Initial Consultation and Quote

Call us on 0333 006 2524
Email to contact@aval-group.co.uk

Or simply fill up the contact form below for your Free Quote

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Lead by Licenced Surveyors

Full UK Coverage

Efficient & Reliable

Quick Quote

Small bat sheltering

Why Choose Aval UK Bat Survey Consultants? 

Just like other environmental impacts, such as noise, air quality, light pollution, and flood risk, are crucial in construction and urban planning, bat surveys play a vital role in ensuring compliance with legal regulations and conservation efforts. Choosing Aval UK Bat Survey Consultants ensures expertise in producing high-quality bat survey reports for successful planning outcomes. 

We also have in-house external light impact assessment consultants who can assist with light pollution’s impact on Bats. We will discuss important factors to consider when creating lighting plans for buildings, roads, and other areas that may impact bats. 

Aval’s team of experienced ecologists specialises in conducting comprehensive bat surveys, providing accurate information about bat roosts, populations, and activity. By working closely with clients, local planning authorities, and conservation bodies, Aval ensures that bat habitats are protected and enhanced, contributing to the preservation of these important species. 

Led by experts with years of experience in the field, Aval UK Bat Survey Consultants offers a cost-effective solution for property owners, developers, and conservationists seeking to protect bat populations. Trust Aval to guide you through the bat survey process with professionalism and care, ensuring a harmonious balance between development needs and environmental protection.

The Importance of Bat Surveys in Development and Conservation 

Bats are a protected species in the UK. Their roosts, whether occupied or not, are safeguarded by law. This makes bat surveys mandatory before any development work that could disturb bats or their roosts. 

Bat surveys provide crucial data about bat populations and their habitats. This information is vital for creating effective conservation strategies. It also helps developers and planning authorities make informed decisions that balance development needs with habitat conservation. 

The importance of bat surveys extends beyond legal compliance. They are a key tool in maintaining biodiversity. Bats play a crucial role in our ecosystem, aiding in pest control and pollination. Their conservation is, therefore, essential for a healthy environment. 

Here are some key reasons why bat surveys are important: 

  • They identify the presence of bats and their roosts, helping to avoid illegal disturbance. 
  • They provide data on bat species and populations, contributing to national conservation databases. 
  • They inform mitigation strategies, ensuring that development projects do not harm bats or their habitats. 
  • They support planning applications, providing evidence that all environmental considerations have been addressed. 
  • They educate property owners and developers about bats, promoting awareness and conservation. 

In essence, bat surveys are a critical tool for sustainable development. They ensure that our actions today do not negatively impact the future of bats and the vital role they play in our ecosystem. 

When conducting bat surveys, emergence and re-entry surveys are crucial steps to assess bat activity around existing buildings, especially those close to woodland areas. These surveys help determine the presence of bats, their roosting habits, and the impact of the development on their habitats. By focusing on sites near woodland, where bats are more likely to roost, these surveys provide valuable insights for conservation efforts and planning considerations. 

Understanding Legal Protections for Bats: Wildlife and Countryside Act & Habitats and Species Regulations 

In the UK, bats and their roosts are legally protected. This protection is provided by two key pieces of legislation: the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017. 

The Wildlife and Countryside Act makes it an offence to intentionally kill, injure, or handle a bat without a license. It also prohibits the disturbance of bats in their roosts. This law applies to all species of bats found in the UK. 

The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations, on the other hand, provide even stronger protection. They make it an offence to deliberately disturb bats, whether in a roost or not. They also prohibit damage or destruction of bat roosts, even when bats are not present. 

Here are some key points to remember about these laws: 

  • Both laws apply to all bat species found in the UK. 
  • It is illegal to intentionally or recklessly disturb bats in their roosts. 
  • It is illegal to damage, destroy, or obstruct access to bat roosts. 
  • These laws apply regardless of whether bats are present in the roost at the time. 
  • A license is required to handle bats or disturb their roosts for the purpose of a bat survey. 

These legal protections underscore the importance of conducting bat surveys before any development work. They ensure that bats and their habitats are considered and protected, promoting the conservation of these important species. 

Aval Consulting Group Ltd: Your Expert Partner in Bat Surveys 

When it comes to bat surveys, Aval Consulting Group Ltd stands as a trusted partner. With a team of experienced ecologists, we specialise in conducting comprehensive bat surveys. Our expertise ensures that your project complies with all legal requirements while also contributing to bat conservation. 

Our team is licensed and trained to carry out all types of bat surveys. We use state-of-the-art equipment and follow the latest guidelines from Natural England and the Bat Conservation Trust. Our surveys provide accurate information about bat roosts, populations, and activity, helping you make informed decisions about your project. 

At Aval Consulting Group Ltd, we understand the importance of balancing development with conservation. We work closely with our clients, local planning authorities, and conservation bodies to ensure that bat habitats are protected and enhanced wherever possible. Trust us to guide you professionally and carefully through the bat survey process. 

Preliminary Roost Assessment: The First Step in Bat Surveys 

A preliminary roost assessment (PRA) is the initial step in any bat survey. This involves a detailed inspection of the site, particularly any buildings or trees that could potentially house bat roosts. Aval Consulting Group Ltd’s experienced surveyors are adept at identifying signs of bat activity, such as droppings, feeding remains, and access points. 

The PRA also includes an assessment of the surrounding habitat. This helps us understand the likelihood of bats using the site. Factors such as proximity to woodland or water bodies, availability of foraging areas, and presence of commuting routes are all considered. 

The findings of the PRA guide the next steps in the bat survey process. If evidence of bats is found, or if the site has high potential for bats, further surveys may be required. These could include emergence and re-entry surveys or activity surveys, depending on the time of year and the species likely to be present. 

Remember, a thorough PRA is crucial for ensuring that all potential impacts on bats are identified early. This allows for effective planning and mitigation, helping to avoid costly delays and legal issues down the line. 

Identifying Bat Roosts and Access Points in Buildings and Trees 

Identifying potential bat roosts is a critical part of any bat survey. Bats can roost in a variety of places, including buildings, trees, and even underground sites. In buildings, bats often roost in roof spaces, under hanging tiles, or in gaps around windows and doors. 

Trees can also provide important roosting sites for bats. Bats may roost in cavities, under loose bark, or in cracks and crevices. The species of tree, its age, and its condition can all influence its suitability as a bat roost. 

Access points are another key consideration. These are the places where bats enter and exit their roosts. Identifying these can help us understand how bats are using the site, and how any proposed development might impact them. 

Remember, identifying bat roosts and access points requires a keen eye and a deep understanding of bat ecology. Aval Consulting Group Ltd’s experienced surveyors have the skills and knowledge to carry out this important task effectively. All our surveys follow the latest CIEEM bat survey guidelines. 

Emergence and Re-entry Surveys: Timing, Techniques, and Tools 

Emergence and re-entry surveys are a key part of bat surveys. These surveys involve observing bats as they leave and return to their roosts. This can provide valuable information about the presence and species of bats at a site. 

Timing is crucial for these surveys. Bats typically emerge from their roosts at dusk and return at dawn. Therefore, surveys must be conducted during these periods to maximise the chances of observing bats. 

A variety of techniques and tools are used in emergence and re-entry surveys. These include visual observation, infrared cameras, and bat detectors. Bat detectors are particularly useful as they can pick up the ultrasonic echolocation calls that bats use to navigate and find food. 

Aval Consulting Group Ltd’s surveyors are well-versed in these techniques and tools. They have the expertise to conduct emergence and re-entry surveys effectively, providing reliable data for your planning applications and conservation efforts.

Activity Surveys: Monitoring Bat Populations and Behavior 

Activity surveys are another crucial component of bat surveys. These surveys focus on monitoring bat behavior in their natural habitats. They provide insights into bat foraging and commuting patterns, which can be vital for conservation efforts. 

Aval Consulting Group Ltd’s surveyors use advanced techniques and equipment for activity surveys. This includes bat detectors that record the echolocation calls of bats. These calls can be analysed to identify the species of bats and understand their behaviour. 

Activity surveys can also help identify important bat habitats. For instance, areas where bats are frequently observed foraging or commuting may be critical for their survival. This information can inform mitigation measures and habitat enhancement strategies. 

In conclusion, activity surveys are an essential tool for understanding bat populations and behaviour. They provide the data needed to protect and conserve bats in the face of development and habitat loss. 

The Role of Local Planning Authority and Natural England in Bat Conservation 

Local planning authorities play a significant role in bat conservation. They are responsible for reviewing planning applications and ensuring that potential impacts on bat habitats are adequately assessed. This often involves requiring bat surveys for developments close to bat habitats or with potential impacts on bat populations. 

Natural England is another key player in bat conservation. This government body oversees the protection of bats in England. It provides guidance on bat surveys and conservation and issues licenses for activities that could disturb bats or their roosts. 

In summary, both local planning authorities and Natural England have crucial roles in bat conservation. They ensure that developments comply with legal protections for bats and contribute to the conservation of these important species. 

Planning Permission and Bat Surveys: What Developers Need to Know 

For developers, understanding the relationship between planning permission and bat surveys is crucial. If a proposed development could potentially impact bat roosts or habitats, a bat survey is typically required as part of the planning application process. This is to ensure that any potential impacts on bats are identified and mitigated. 

The results of the bat survey can influence the planning authority’s decision. If bats are found on the site, the developer may need to adjust the project design or timing to avoid disturbing the bats. In some cases, Natural England may issue a license allowing the development to proceed, provided that appropriate mitigation measures are implemented. 

In conclusion, bat surveys are not just a legal requirement for developers. They are also an important tool for balancing development needs with the conservation of bats, a protected species under UK law. 

Mitigation and Enhancement: Balancing Development with Bat Conservation 

Mitigation and enhancement measures are key components of bat conservation in the context of development. These measures are designed to reduce the impact of development on bats and their habitats. They are often required when a bat survey identifies the presence of bats or potential bat roosts on a development site. 

Mitigation measures may include adjusting the timing of construction to avoid disturbing bats during their breeding season. They may also involve modifying the design of the development to preserve existing bat roosts or creating new roosts to compensate for any that are lost. 

Enhancement measures, on the other hand, aim to improve conditions for bats on the development site. This could involve planting trees or creating water features to attract insects for bats to feed on. It could also include installing bat boxes to provide additional roosting sites. 

In conclusion, mitigation and enhancement measures play a crucial role in balancing development with bat conservation. They ensure that development can proceed while also protecting and enhancing habitats for bats, contributing to the overall goal of biodiversity conservation. 

Case Studies: Successful Bat Surveys and Conservation Outcomes 

Case studies provide valuable insights into the practical application of bat surveys and conservation measures. They highlight the challenges and solutions encountered in real-world scenarios. One such case involved a proposed housing development close to a woodland known to be a bat habitat. 

The developer engaged Aval Consulting Group Ltd to conduct a bat survey. The survey identified several species of bats using the woodland and surrounding areas for foraging and commuting. The presence of bat roosts in nearby trees was also confirmed. 

In response to these findings, the developer modified the design of the housing development to preserve the woodland and maintain a buffer zone between the houses and the bat habitat. They also installed bat boxes in the woodland to provide additional roosting sites for bats. 

This case study demonstrates the critical role of bat surveys in informing development decisions. It also highlights the potential for successful outcomes when developers, surveyors, and conservationists work together to balance development with bat conservation. 

The Vital Role of UK Bat Groups in Conservation 

In the UK, there are over 80 Bat Groups dedicated to the conservation and study of bats. These groups play a crucial role in raising awareness, conducting research, and implementing conservation efforts to protect bat populations. Some of the prominent Bat Groups in the UK include: 

  • Bat Conservation Trust (BCT): The Bat Conservation Trust is a leading organisation focused on bat conservation in the UK. They work to promote the conservation of bats through research, education, and advocacy. 
  • Devon Bat Group: The Devon Bat Group is a local group dedicated to the study and protection of bats in the Devon region. They conduct surveys, educational events, and conservation projects to safeguard bat populations.
  • Greater Manchester Bat Group: The Greater Manchester Bat Group is actively involved in monitoring bat populations in the Greater Manchester area. They work to raise awareness about bats and their conservation needs. 
  • Kent Bat Group: The Kent Bat Group is committed to the conservation of bats in the Kent region. They engage in bat surveys, habitat enhancement projects, and public outreach activities to protect bats and their habitats.
  • Northumberland Bat Group: The Northumberland Bat Group focuses on studying and conserving bat species in the Northumberland area. They collaborate with local communities and organisations to promote bat conservation. 
  • Surrey Bat Group: The Surry Bat Group focuses on the conservation and study of bats in the Surry region. They are actively involved in monitoring bat populations, conducting surveys, and raising awareness about bat conservation. 
  • Essex Bat Group: The Essex Bat Group is committed to the protection and study of bats in the Essex area. They work on conservation projects, educational initiatives, and research to safeguard bat species. 
  • Sussex Bat Group: The Sussex Bat Group plays a crucial role in bat conservation efforts in the Sussex region. They conduct surveys, habitat enhancement projects, and community outreach programs to promote the conservation of bats. 
  • London Bat Group: The London Bat Group is dedicated to the conservation and study of bats in the London area. They engage in monitoring bat populations, organising events, and advocating for bat conservation in urban environments. 

These Bat Groups, along with many others across the UK, play a vital role in protecting and conserving bat species through research, monitoring, and community engagement. 

The Diversity of the UK Bat Species 

The United Kingdom is home to a remarkable variety of bat species, each playing a crucial role in maintaining healthy ecosystems. There are 18 species of bats in the UK, making up nearly a quarter of all mammal species in the country. These nocturnal creatures are often misunderstood, yet they are essential for pest control, pollination, and seed dispersal. Here, we explore some of the most notable UK bat species.

  • Common Pipistrelle (Pipistrellus pipistrellus): The most common bat in the UK, found in urban and rural areas. They have a wingspan of 18-25 cm and are known for their agile flight as they hunt for insects at dusk. 
  • Soprano Pipistrelle (Pipistrellus pygmaeus): Similar to the Common Pipistrelle but distinguished by its higher-pitched echolocation calls. They prefer wetland habitats and are often seen flying over water bodies. 
  • Nathusius’ Pipistrelle (Pipistrellus nathusii): A rare visitor to the UK, primarily seen during migration periods. They are slightly larger than other pipistrelles and are often found near large bodies of water. 
  • Brown Long-eared Bat (Plecotus auritus): Easily recognised by its large ears, this species gleans insects from foliage rather than catching them mid-air. Commonly found in woodlands and roosting in old buildings and tree holes. 
  • Grey Long-eared Bat (Plecotus austriacus): Similar to the Brown Long-eared Bat but with grey fur. They are rare in the UK, mainly found in southern England, and prefer warm, dry habitats. 
  • Daubenton’s Bat (Myotis daubentonii) : Known as the “water bat,” it skims over water surfaces to catch aquatic insects. They roost near water bodies in tunnels, bridges, and tree cavities. 
  • Whiskered Bat (Myotis mystacinus) : A small bat with a distinctive appearance, including a darker face and whisker-like hairs. They are found in woodlands, often roosting in buildings and bat boxes.  
  • Brandt’s Bat (Myotis brandtii): Very similar to the Whiskered Bat but with subtle differences in dentition and echolocation calls. They are found in similar habitats, including woodlands and buildings.  
  • Natterer’s Bat (Myotis nattereri): This medium-sized bat has a distinctive fringe on its tail membrane. They are versatile hunters, found in woodlands, grasslands, and agricultural areas. 
  • Bechstein’s Bat (Myotis bechsteinii): One of the UK’s rarest bats, it prefers ancient woodlands with plenty of tree cavities for roosting. They have large ears and are agile flyers.  
  • Alcathoe Bat (Myotis alcathoe): A recently discovered species in the UK, it is very similar to Whiskered and Brandt’s bats. They inhabit wooded areas and roost in tree cavities and buildings.  
  • Serotine Bat (Eptesicus serotinus): A large bat with a broad wingspan, they are among the first bats to emerge in the evening. They prefer open habitats and are often found roosting in older buildings. 
  •  Noctule Bat (Nyctalus noctula): One of the largest UK bats, with a robust body and a wingspan of up to 40 cm. They are powerful fliers and roost in tree holes and bat boxes. 
  •  Leisler’s Bat (Nyctalus leisleri): Slightly smaller than the Noctule, they also have a powerful flight and prefer open areas. They are often seen flying high and fast over woodlands and parks. 
  •  Barbastelle (Barbastella barbastellus): A rare and distinctive bat with a pug-like face and broad ears. They prefer woodland habitats and roost in tree crevices and old buildings. 
  •  Greater Horseshoe Bat (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum): One of the UK’s rarest bats, known for its horseshoe-shaped noseleaf used for echolocation. They inhabit southwestern England and Wales, roosting in caves and old buildings. 
  •  Lesser Horseshoe Bat (Rhinolophus hipposideros): Smaller than the Greater Horseshoe Bat but with similar facial features. They also roost in southwestern England and Wales, favoring old buildings and underground sites. 
  •  Greater Mouse-eared Bat (Myotis myotis): Once thought extinct in the UK, a single individual was rediscovered in recent years. They are large bats with a wingspan of up to 45 cm, primarily found in Europe. 

 Conservation and Protection 

All UK bat species are legally protected, making it illegal to harm or disturb them or their habitats. Conservation efforts focus on monitoring populations, protecting roosting sites, and enhancing habitats. Public awareness and involvement are crucial for the continued protection of these fascinating mammals. 

Understanding the diversity of UK bat species helps us appreciate their ecological importance and the need to safeguard their future. Whether spotted darting through the night sky or roosting quietly in a tree, bats are a vital part of our natural heritage. 

Bat surveys play a pivotal role in sustainable development. They provide crucial data that informs planning decisions, ensuring that development projects do not harm bat populations or their habitats. 

By engaging experts like Aval Consulting Group Ltd, developers can ensure that their projects are compliant with legal requirements and contribute to the conservation of bats. This not only protects our natural heritage but also fosters a more sustainable and ecologically balanced future. 

For more on Ecology at Aval click here.

Free Initial Consultation and Quote

Call us on 0333 006 2524
Email to contact@aval-group.co.uk

Frequently Asked Questions 

What is a bat survey?

A bat survey is an ecological assessment conducted to identify the presence and activity of bats within a specific area. These surveys are typically required for development projects to ensure compliance with wildlife protection laws and to conserve bat populations. 

Why are bat surveys necessary?

Bat surveys are essential for protecting bat species, which are legally protected in many regions due to their declining populations. The surveys help identify bat habitats and ensure that development or construction projects do not negatively impact these crucial wildlife areas. 

When should a bat survey be conducted?

Bat surveys are usually conducted during the bats’ active season, which typically runs from May to September in many regions. The exact timing can vary depending on the local climate and bat species present. 

Who can conduct a bat survey?

Bat surveys must be conducted by qualified ecologists with specific training and experience in bat ecology. These professionals are typically licensed and adhere to standardised survey methodologies. 

What methods are used in bat surveys?

Common methods include daytime inspections for roosts, dusk and dawn activity surveys using bat detectors, and occasionally trapping and radio-tracking. The specific methods used depend on the survey objectives and the habitat in question. 

How long does a bat survey take?

The duration of a bat survey varies depending on the complexity of the site and the number of surveys needed. Preliminary roost assessments can be completed in a few hours, while activity surveys might require multiple visits over several months. 

What happens if bats are found on my property?

If bats are discovered, the survey will inform you about the species present, their roosting sites, and activity patterns. Mitigation measures will be recommended to minimise harm, which might include adjusting development plans, creating alternative roosting sites, or obtaining necessary licenses for disturbance. 

Are there legal consequences for disturbing bats without a survey?

Yes, disturbing or harming bats or their roosts without proper assessment and mitigation can lead to legal consequences, including fines and project delays. Bats are protected by law in many countries, and non-compliance can result in serious penalties. 

How can I prepare for a bat survey?

To prepare, ensure that the surveyors have access to all parts of the property, including lofts, basements, and outbuildings. Clearing overgrown vegetation can also help facilitate the survey process. 

What are the costs associated with a bat survey?

The cost varies depending on the survey’s scope, location, and complexity. Basic surveys can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. It’s advisable to obtain quotes from multiple qualified ecologists to get a clear understanding of potential costs. 

Can bat surveys delay my project?

Yes, if bats are found and additional mitigation measures are required, it can delay project timelines. However, early planning and consultation with ecologists can help minimise delays by integrating mitigation measures into the project plan from the start. 

What is the difference between a preliminary roost assessment and a full bat survey?

A preliminary roost assessment (PRA) involves a daytime inspection to identify potential bat roosting sites, while a full bat survey includes additional dusk and dawn surveys to monitor bat activity and confirm the presence of bats. 

Are bat surveys required for all types of development?

Not always. Bat surveys are typically required for developments that involve significant alterations to buildings, tree felling, or work in areas known to support bat populations. Local planning authorities can provide specific guidance based on the type and location of the development. 

What is a bat roost?

A bat roost is any structure or place that bats use for shelter, breeding, or resting. Roosts can be found in a variety of locations, including buildings, trees, caves, and bridges. 

How are bat detectors used in surveys?

Bat detectors are devices that convert ultrasonic bat calls into audible sounds, allowing ecologists to identify and monitor bat activity. These detectors can provide valuable data on species presence, abundance, and behavior. 

What is a mitigation strategy in the context of bat surveys?

A mitigation strategy includes measures designed to avoid, reduce, or compensate for the impacts of development on bats. This might involve modifying construction practices, creating new roosting sites, or implementing timing restrictions to avoid disturbing bats during sensitive periods. 

Can I conduct my own bat survey?

While you can use basic tools like bat detectors to observe bat activity, formal bat surveys must be conducted by qualified professionals to ensure accuracy and compliance with legal requirements. 

How do I find a qualified bat surveyor?

Qualified bat surveyors can be found through professional ecological consulting firms or organisations specialising in wildlife conservation. Look for professionals with appropriate licenses and membership in relevant ecological or environmental bodies. 

What should I do if I find a bat during construction?

If you find a bat during construction, stop work immediately and consult with an ecologist. Handling bats or disturbing their roosts without proper guidance can be illegal and harmful to the bats. 

How are bat populations monitored over time?

Bat populations are monitored through ongoing surveys and research, often involving community science projects, acoustic monitoring, and studies of bat roosts and foraging habitats. These efforts help track changes in bat populations and inform conservation strategies. 

What are the most common species of bats found in surveys?

Common bat species vary by region, but some frequently encountered species include the common pipistrelle, brown long-eared bat, and various species of Myotis bats. Your local ecologist can provide information specific to your area. 


    Are there any specific times of year when bat surveys cannot be conducted?

    Surveys are generally not conducted during the winter months when bats are hibernating. The ideal survey period is during the warmer months when bats are most active, typically between May and September. 

    Can bat surveys be done in urban areas?

    Yes, bat surveys can be conducted in urban areas. Many bat species have adapted to urban environments and can be found roosting in buildings and foraging in parks and gardens. 

    How do I get a bat license for development work?

    If your project requires disturbing or destroying bat roosts, you will need to apply for a bat license from the relevant wildlife authority. This process usually involves submitting a detailed mitigation plan and demonstrating that all reasonable steps have been taken to avoid harming bats. 

    What should I do if I suspect bats are living in my attic?

    If you suspect bats are in your attic, avoid disturbing them and consult with a qualified ecologist. They can conduct a survey to confirm the presence of bats and provide advice on managing the situation in compliance with wildlife protection laws. 

    Why Do I Need a Bat Survey?

    A bat survey is essential to determine if bats, a protected species in the UK, are present in a proposed development area. Bats and their roosts are protected by law under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017. The survey ensures that any potential impact on bat populations is identified and mitigated, helping to conserve biodiversity and comply with legal requirements. 

    What Kind of Works Would Affect Bats?

    Various works can affect bats, especially those that involve altering or demolishing structures where bats might roost. This includes roofing works, building renovations, extensions, tree felling, and even changes to external lighting. Essentially, any activity that could disturb, damage, or destroy a bat roost requires careful consideration and, likely, a bat survey. 

    Where do Bats Roost?

    Bats roost in a variety of places, including natural sites like trees, caves, and cliffs, as well as man-made structures such as houses, barns, bridges, and tunnels. They seek out sheltered, dark areas that provide safety from predators and suitable microclimates for breeding and hibernation. 

    How Much Does a Bat Survey Cost?

    The cost of a bat survey can vary widely based on the complexity of the site and the level of survey required. A Preliminary Roost Assessment typically starts around £300-£500, while more detailed surveys could range from £500 to over £1,500. It’s advisable to obtain quotes from several ecological consultants. 

    Are there any other costs I need to be aware of?

    Yes, additional costs may include mitigation measures if bats are found, such as installing bat boxes or modifying buildings to accommodate bats. There might also be fees for obtaining necessary licenses from Natural England, especially if disturbing bats or their roosts is unavoidable. 

    Do I Need a Bat Survey for Planning Permission?

    In most cases, planning authorities will require a bat survey if the proposed development is likely to affect bats or their habitats. This requirement ensures compliance with wildlife protection laws and helps prevent delays in the planning process. 

    Can Bats Stop Me From Getting Planning?

    While the presence of bats doesn’t necessarily stop planning permission, it can delay the process and require modifications to your plans. If bats are found, mitigation measures will need to be incorporated into the development proposal to minimise harm to the bat population. 

    Why Can’t Bat Surveys be Conditions of Planning Permission?

    Bat surveys can’t be conditions of planning permission because they need to be conducted and reviewed before planning decisions are made. This ensures that any potential impacts on bats are identified and mitigated upfront, preventing legal breaches and ensuring the development is ecologically responsible. 

    When are the New Bat Survey Guidelines Coming Out?

    New bat survey guidelines are periodically released by conservation bodies like the Bat Conservation Trust (BCT). These updates reflect the latest research and best practices in bat conservation. It’s essential to stay informed through the BCT website or consult with your ecological survey provider for the most current guidelines. 

    Who Are You and Where Are You Based?

    We are a team of licensed and experienced ecologists specialising in bat surveys and conservation. Based in [Your Location], we provide comprehensive ecological services across the UK, ensuring compliance with legal requirements and promoting biodiversity in development projects. 

    How do I Book a Bat Survey?

    Booking a bat survey is straightforward. Contact us via phone or email to discuss your project needs. We will provide a detailed quote and schedule a site visit at a convenient time. Early booking is recommended, especially during the peak survey season. 

    Why are bats protected in the UK?

    Bats are protected in the UK due to their ecological importance and declining populations. They play a crucial role in pest control and pollination. Legal protection aims to conserve bat species and their habitats, ensuring their survival and the health of ecosystems. 

    Do I need a bat survey to replace my roof?

    Yes, if your property is in an area where bats are known to roost, or if your building has features that could support bats, a bat survey will likely be required before replacing your roof. This ensures that any bats present are protected and appropriate mitigation measures are in place. 

    Are planning authorities legally obliged to request bat surveys?

    Planning authorities are legally obliged to consider the potential impact on protected species, including bats, when making planning decisions. This often means requesting a bat survey to ensure that developments comply with wildlife protection laws and conservation guidelines.