Habitat and Botanical Survey

Why might you need a habitat or botanical survey?

An assessment of the value of habitats on site to be lost is an integral part of ecological surveys and a key requirement of Local Planning Authorities. Typically, habitats will be mapped as part of the Preliminary Ecological Appraisal of a site, following Phase 1 Habitat Survey methodologies. Where habitats of higher quality, including some grasslands, woodlands and upland habitats, are present, further botanical survey may be required to fully assess the site’s value.

What should you expect to happen?

Preliminary Ecological Appraisal Initial habitat mapping will be carried out during the preliminary ecological appraisal. The surveyor will carry out a walkover of the site, mapping broad habitat types based on Phase 1 Habitat survey methodologies. More information can be found on the Preliminary Ecological Appraisal page. In many cases, this will be a sufficient level of habitat survey.

Botanical Survey Where habitats of greater value are proposed, more detailed botanical survey will be recommended during key growing periods. Survey will gather more detailed information on plant communities present and can be completed to either Phase 2 Habitat Survey or National Vegetation Classification level.

Reporting Findings of botanical survey work will typically be incorporated into an existing preliminary ecological appraisal report. This will include impact assessment and mitigation and/or compensation recommendations for any impacts to or loss of habitats.

When can surveys be carried out?

Preliminary ecological appraisal can be carried out at any time of year, although the optimal period is within the spring and summer months.

Detailed botanical survey should be carried out in key growing periods relevant to the habitats present, typically in the spring and summer.

What experience do E3 have?

E3 have very broad ranging experience in carrying out preliminary ecological appraisals. The team at E3 Ecology also includes botanists with particular experience in upland habitat survey, woodland and lowland grassland survey.