The year started with the launch of one of our largest native woodland planting projects this year. As part of the Gatwick Airport Flood Alleviation Scheme, Ecosulis’ HCEC Team were asked to conduct a five-year habitat creation and maintenance program for the Environment Agency in Crawley. Our task for the first phase of works in 2016, was to plant over 4,500 trees and shrubs to create a new woodland habitat that would be beneficial to the Dormice that have been found in adjacent woodland around the site.
After the wettest winter on record and widespread flooding across the UK, Alastair Driver (the National Biodiversity Manager of the Environment Agency) took to twitter to highlight the efforts into Natural Flood Management research across the UK. Some of the facts tweeted include -
In 1990, Ecosulis was a family owned business set up by Dave and Ali Green. Ecosulis was run from the family home and grew by addressing clients needs at the time, by offering applied ecological knowledge, technical capability and a strong commercial awareness.
Over the twenty five years since, the business has expanded and has a presence throughout the UK and offices in Bath, Exeter, Monmouth, Chester and London. The HQ is based in a 3,000sq ft Rickyard (seed store) located between Bristol and Bath.
New water vole guidelines are set to be released towards the end of this year. There are likely to be some significant changes to the way water vole surveys need to be undertaken, and how water vole mitigation strategies can be implemented. Some of the key changes are detailed below:
Dormice are very rarely seen and one of our Assistant Ecological Consultants, Marc Anderton, was lucky enough to get up close and personal with a few recently, whilst on a Dormouse course in Somerset.
Each year public and private sector projects throughout the UK plant trees as part of landscape plans. However much of this planting fails and many trees die before they reach maturity. As much as 25% of planting fails within the public sector according to a 2008 report commissioned by the Department of Communities and Local Government. A similar failure rate is believed to exist in the private sector.
Ecosulis recently donated 500 dormouse tubes to the Somerset Wildlife Trust, which were previously used on one of our large infrastructure projects. The tubes will be used within dormouse monitoring schemes and other initiatives by the trust. Monitoring works are undertaken to provide an indication of population size and the health of dormouse populations in Somerset and the south west.
Ecosulis congratulate Dr Alan Feest their Research Director on his recognition as a leading UK ecologist following his review and interview by the Chartered Institute of Ecologists and Ecological Managers. Dr Feest who is already a Fellow of CIWEM joins an elite group of chartered ecologists whose life-time contribution to the furtherance of ecology in the UK is being recognised by this new accreditation.
A study has been compiled for the Biodiversity 2020 Terrestrial Biodiversity Group (TBG) which focused on 159 National Character Areas and the potential to add or restore habitats within these sites. As well as looking at how to achieve this, they assessed prescriptions to ensure that habitats could be restored without environmental conflicts of interest (for example saltmarsh creation on the same space as floodland grazing).