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Wetland Ecology Case Studies

Our Managing Director, Tim Smith, has worked as a team member on a wide variety of projects both as an individual consultant or as a employee of various specialist consultancies. The projects he has been involved in include:

Swineham Farm, Wareham, Dorset

Survey of completed gravel pit restoration using a Trimble GeoXT handheld computer with GPS and subsequent production of a post-restoration report complete with as-built plans produced in ArcGis. Supervised contractors and undertook various aspects of the restoration work such as the translocation of large quantities of common reed dredged from ditches within the adjacent Wareham Meadows SSSI.

Specialist School, Herefordshire

Production of a detailed design of a wetland treatment system to treat wastewater from a school for autistic children located several miles from mains sewerage.

Bodenham Lake SSSI/LNR, Bodenham, Herefordshire

Production of a detailed design with subsequent contractor supervision for habitat enhancement and to improve the visitor experience.

Tim Smith collecting a water sample at Darwell Reservoir, Battle, East Sussex

The Swale SPA, Kent

Rationalised GIS datasets of the Swale SPA using aerial photography to delineate saltmarsh from mudflat and rationalise SSSI unit boundaries to accurately reflect the extent of habitat in favourable condition for the purposes of a Government Public Service Agreement target. Also conducted an independent research project studying plant and invertebrate communities to ascertain whether licensed groundwater abstractions were having an adverse effect on the integrity of grazing marshes within the Swale SPA as part of the review of consents under the Habitats Regulations.

Careshall Bog, Loch Leven SSSI/NNR/SPA

Soil and topographic surveys using a Trimble R8 Virtual Reference Station (VRS) and subsequent production of terrain maps and models in ArcGis. These were used to inform the design of mitigation for disturbance to pink-footed geese Anser brachyrhynchus and potential hydrological changes to the bog from a proposed footpath.

GIS Wetland Inventory of Wales

Designed and disseminated an electronic questionnaire to relevant stakeholders, and then used the returned information to produce a digital wetland inventory of Wales in ArcGis.

Ouse Washes SSSI/SPA/SAC, Welney, Norfolk

Topographic and ecological surveys to inform detailed designs for the creation of wet grassland for Wigeon Anas penelope on arable land as mitigation for flood defence work.

Oare Marshes SSSI/SPA, Faversham, Kent

Independent research project to ascertain the effects of ESA Tier 1a management (raised water levels) on the ditch flora at Oare Marshes SSSI within the Swale SPA.

Sheepdrove Organic Farm, Berkshire and Killmeaden Wetlands, Waterford, Ireland

Detailed botanical and invertebrate surveys of numerous wetland sites for monitoring and investigative purposes.

Five Valleys Ecology Ltd


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Survey Season Calendar

Download a copy of our latest Ecology Survey Calendar (pdf, 210 K) to help avoid costly delays to your projects due to missing ecology survey windows.

Start of the Great Crested Newt Survey Season

Surveys for great crested newts (GCNs) can be undertaken from mid-March to mid-June depending on weather conditions. Local Planning Authorities (LPAs) require survey information before planning applications are determined in accordance with Paragraphs 98 and 99 of 'ODPM Circular 06/2005 Biodiversity and Geological Conservation'. We recommend that clients consider the requirement for newt surveys now and plan ahead. Do not miss the narrow GCN survey window. Contact us now to book in surveys and for further advice.

Supreme Court Ruling on the 'Deliberate Disturbance' Offence

In the case of Morge vs Hampshire County Council [2011] UKSC 2 on appeal from: [2010] EWCA Civ 608 the Supreme Court has overruled the Court of Appeal and given a more cautious interpretation of the Article 12(1)(b) 'deliberate disturbance' offence. The Supreme Court believed that the Court of Appeal had set the threshold for 'deliberate disturbance' too high. Whilst no minimum threshold was given by the Supreme Court, a leading environmental lawyer has reviewed the case and believes that in some circumstances disturbance of one or two individuals of a European Protected Species (EPS) may fall within the offence.

Five Valleys Ecology Receive an Ethical Award from the Ethical Company Organisation

Five Valleys Ecology are delighted to have received an Ethical Award and accreditation from the Ethical Company Organisation in recognition of our strong commitment to ethical business practices. The research team stated 'Five Valleys Ecology are commended for puting ethical and environmental considerations at the heart of their business and for providing an ethical alternative within their sector'.


Email us to book a free 15 minute no-obligation consultation to discuss your site and requirements in more detail.