Bats and bat roosts
Both bats and their roosts are protected in law. Bats are one of the most likely species to be sharing a home or other building or mature tree and it is essential to idenitify their presence and needs when submitting a planning application.
It is essential that the bat survey is thorough enough to confirm the presence or absence of bats. While this could be seen as causing a delay and extra expense during the planning application, it is far better to be thorough before building starts. If bats are then found during construction, works must stop and this proves far more costly than a thorough survey.
The presence of bats will rarely mean a development cannot go ahead but it will likely affect the development. There may need to be an alteration to the timing of works to leave the bats undisturbed at critical times and to ensure that there is provision for bats to continue to use the building. The design might also need to be altered to accommodate the bat species involved.
All developers should read Planning Advice Note 17: Bats, buildings and development before submitting applications that may affect bats.
Sites that require a survey: The National Park Authority will determine whether a bat survey is required for a development as it is a legal requirement for the planning authority to assess possible impact on bats.
It will be helpful to read the Guidance on where a bat survey is likely to be required so that the need for a survey can be identified early in the design and planning process.
A list of Ecological surveyors can be found on the Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (IEEM) Members Directory, or by contacting IEEM at;
43 Southgate Street,
T: 01962 868626
F: 01962 868625
For general information about bats, please visit the website of the Bat Conservation Trust. (BCT)
Also on the Bat Conservation Trust website is:
Best practice information on roosts http://roost.bats.org.uk/
A quick guide to Bats and the Law.
A guide for roost owners called Living with bats.
More information on Bats, Buildings and Development.
Guidelines on bat mitigation have been produced by English Nature (now Natural England). While this is very useful, please note that licensing arrangements are different in Wales than in England.
See more information on bats in the National Park.