Our Services

EP Ecology and our team of associates are able to provide a large number of ecology services from habitat and species surveys to impact assessments and ecological clerk of works. We’ve summarised what’s included within our services below.

Habitat Survey Services

EP Ecology and our associates are fully capable of delivering habitat surveys to inform our clients. Our skilled surveyors have years of experience of delivering plant and habitat surveys and would be happy to hear from you for a no-obligations discussion about your botany survey needs, so please do feel free to get in touch.

  • Phase 1 Habitat surveys;
  • National Vegetation Classification (NVC) surveys;
  • UK Habitat Classification (UKHAB) surveys;
  • Peat depth surveys; and
  • Invasive non-native species surveys.

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Protected Species Surveys – Amphibians and Reptiles

An EP Ecology specialism, we have years of experience of surveying for reptiles and amphibians and has published several research articles on amphibians and reptiles. We’d be more than happy to discuss any reptile or amphibian survey queries or requirements your plan or project may have. Get in touch today for a no-obligations chat.

  • Reptile survey (including habitat assessment, artificial cover object survey, and transect surveys);
  • Great crested newt survey (including Habitat Suitability Index surveys; environmental DNA (eDNA); and traditional survey techniques); and
  • Widespread amphibian surveys.

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Protected Species Surveys – Mammals

We have in-house experience of mammal surveys in a development and conservation setting for protected mammal species. Get in touch today to discuss any concerns you may have about mammal surveys for your site.

  • Bat surveys (including preliminary roost assessment, activity, and roost presence/absence surveys);
  • Badger surveys (including sett location and characterisation);
  • Otter, water vole, and beaver surveys;
  • Red squirrel and pine marten surveys; and
  • Wildcat surveys.

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Protected Species Surveys – Birds

Though not something we currently tackle in-house, our network of associates contains several great birders who can deliver all manner of ornithology services. EP Ecology can advise you of the bird survey requirements likely to be encountered by your project. We can then deliver a bespoke package designed to inform the planning authority of the impacts on birds and the requirements for progression with your proposals. Get in touch today to discuss your needs.

  • Breeding bird surveys;
  • Wintering bird surveys;
  • Species specific surveys (e.g. barn owl or black grouse); and
  • Schedule 1 species surveys.

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Preliminary Ecological Appraisal Service

A preliminary ecological appraisal (PEA), extends Phase 1 Habitat surveys to include notes on the presence of protected and notable species as well as nearby designated sites. Our PEA service provides a detailed report with requirements and recommendations to continue with the project which is suitable for submission to the local planning authority. Get in touch for a no-obligations discussion about a PEA for your project today.

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Ecological Impact Assessment Service

Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA) is a thorough assessment of the effects of a project or plan on biodiversity. Usually, EcIA goes through a “scoping” exercise where the key features (be they a species, a habitat, or designated site) are chosen to be assessed (“scoped in” or “scoped out”). The assessment itself looks at whether there will be any effects, what type of effects, and what scale or magnitude these effects will have on the key features. EcIA sets out a series of mitigation and compensation measures that are committed to by the developer to combat the effects of their development. These are then used to determine the residual effects of the development on the key features.

EP Ecology and our associates have extensive experience of ecological impact assessment for a variety of different schemes, be they housing developments, transport routes, or renewable energy. Get in touch today to discuss how EP Ecology can assist you with your EcIA needs.

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Habitats Regulations Appraisal Service

Habitats Regulations Appraisal (HRA) looks at a project or plan and determines whether it is likely to have any “likely significant effects” on any site which is part of the UK Site Network (formerly the Natura 2000 Site Network). The UK Site network includes Special Protection Areas and Special Areas of Conservation. Typically, HRA are completed by the “Competent Authority” (often the Local Planning Authority) but they may ask developers to provide a “shadow” HRA which is used to inform their assessment.

EP Ecology can deliver HRA reports for your project or plan, get in touch to discuss any HRA needs you may have.

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Biodiversity Enhancement and Habitat Management Plans

Biodiversity Enhancement and Habitat Management planning documents broadly do the same thing. They both seek to ensure that the habitats and species dependent upon them are retained on a site; that their habitats are enhanced to encourage continued use; and to encourage more species to enter the ecosystem. Biodiversity enhancement plans or habitat management plans are often used to microsite and clarify the position of mitigation and compensation measures identified during Ecological Impact Assessment. However, they are also often used to show planning authorities what and where enhancement and mitigation measures are to be enacted.

EP Ecology and our associates are all well-versed in the techniques of biodiversity enhancement and habitat management including a keen interest in rewilding. Get in touch to discuss any needs you may have for biodiversity enhancement or habitat management planning.

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Mitigation Design and Licensing

Once we have established what’s present within a site, our skilled ecologists can advise you of the effects of your development and the requirement for mitigation and licensing to facilitate project progression.

Habitat and Species Protection Plans

Part of mitigation and licensing includes the creation of species protection plans, these documents highlight to all site staff the measures that are to be put in place to ensure that protected species and habitats are safeguarded. EP Ecology and our associates are experienced in preparing habitat and species protection plans and delivering on site Ecological Clerk of Works.

Ecological Clerk of Works

Once the preliminary species surveys, impact assessment, mitigation design and any licensing has been completed and granted, a project can be consented During the construction phase of a project, an ecologist may be present on site to enact mitigation and oversee works which may harm protected species or habitats. EP Ecology can provide skilled ecologists to undertake ecological clerk of works activities for any works on site. Get in touch today to discuss your requirements.

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Professional Services


Erik can deliver bespoke training to fellow ecologists and early-career graduates or students in some of the principles of ecological consultancy.

These are currently on hold due to coronavirus restrictions.


With a number of peer-reviewed papers under our belts, we are able to offer proof-reading and technical review of ecological project reports and academic research-papers.

EP Ecology Ltd Director, Erik Paterson delivering a research talk at a conference

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Get in touch

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