NVC PHASE 2 HABITAT SURVEY

EXTENSIVE EXPERIENCE IN CONDUCTING NVC PHASE 2 SURVEYS

wet and dry heath, blanket bog, woodland, grassland and wetlands

AERIAL MAPPING

PRECISE GEO REFERENCED ORTHOMOSAIC

45º inclination from the chosen photo target

NEWT SURVEYS

SMOOTH NEWT - THE ONLY NATIVE SPECIES OF NEWT IN IRELAND

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BLACKSTAFF ECOLOGY LTD

Blackstaff Ecology is an Ecological Consultancy based in Belfast. We provide a range of Ecological Services, which primarily involve Ecological Impact Assessments (EcIA's) for development projects (i.e. Road Schemes, Wind Farms & Housing Developments). In order to inform the EcIA's (for inclusion within any Environmental Statement), a bespoke combination of the following surveys are usually completed (depending on the site/planning requirements).

NVC PHASE 2 HABITAT SURVEY

Our ecologists have extensive experience of conducting NVC Phase 2 Surveys across a range of semi-natural habitats including; wet and dry heath, blanket bog, woodland, grassland and wetlands

These surveys are often required when a development site includes areas of priority habitat (i.e. blanket bog or heath on a proposed wind farm site). Surveys are conducted by cataloguing the species present in a 2m x 2m releve (or quadrat) based on their relative abundance. This information is used in conjunction with a number of computer programmes and NVC guides to classify the habitats present in a given area to their NVC code (i.e. M23).

RED SQUIRREL

Red squirrels and their dreys are protected under by various forms of national legislation throughout Ireland and across Britain

It is an offence to intentionally or recklessly kill, injure or take red squirrels. It is also an offence to intentionally or recklessly: damage or destroy, or obstruct access to, any structure or place which red squirrels use for shelter or protection.

Red squirrel surveys are required prior to the removal of woodland or forestry on a site for development purposes and to inform any associated planning application or EIA. Surveys involve visiting the site 4 times across a 2 week period to search for squirrels. Various methods are employed depending on possible squirrel density but often involve; walked transects (after dawn); baited camera traps and hair tubes (which require a license).

OUR TEAM

CORMAC LOUGHRAN

Owner and Principal Ecologist

Cormac is a Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv) who has worked as an ecological consultant since 2004 and who (since 2009) has specialised in providing ecological advice to the onshore wind industry. His work primarily involves the production of ecology chapters for Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA), along with the associated suite of ecological surveys. Since 2009 Cormac has written the ecology assessment for ten wind farm projects in Northern Ireland. Recently he has also been asked to attend four (wind farm) appeal hearings as an expert witness. He has also written ten HMP (Habitat Management Plans) for windfarm projects, (again 2009) and has also conducted nine PEA’s (Preliminary Ecological Appraisals) as part of the site finding process for potential (new) sites.

DR BRIAN SUTTON

Principal Ecologist

Brian has had 17 years’ experience as a professional ecologist, although he was involved in ecological projects for many years prior to this, mainly on a voluntary basis. Brian specialises in bird studies, but he is also an experienced habitat surveyor, with experience of most of the habitat types found within Northern Ireland. He has considerable experience of ecological assessments and Environmental Impact Assessment (EIAs).

PHILIP LEATHEM

GIS Technician/UAS Operator and Technician

Philip is an Unmanned Aerial Systems Operator & GIS Technician who Joined Blackstaff Ecology Ltd in October 2014. Philip has a Basic National UAS Certificate and permission to fly from the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority). Philip primary role is the operation of the eBee (a fully autonomous professional mapping drone used to capture high-resolution aerial photos, 2D orthomosaics & 3D models).

Karl Hamilton

Ecologist

Karl has extensive experience in providing ecological consultancy advice, including habitat monitoring & management advice for a wide range of native flora & fauna. He has extensive experience in surveying, birds, mammals, herpetofauna, (extended) phase 1 and phase 2 (NVC) habitat survey and other protected species surveys

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