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Great Crested Newt Surveys

Coopers have a licensed member of staff who can survey and provide site presence where great crested newts are anticipated to be present.

Presence/Absence Surveys

Coopers can provide absence/presence surveys to assess the potential for a site to be affected by great crested newts, especially where ponds and water courses are present on sites for proposed developments.  This work is preferably undertaken between March and June and comprises torch surveys of the ponds over a period of weeks to determine the whether or not the pond or watercourse is being utilised as a breeding site.  A terrestrial survey will also be undertaken as part of the torch survey during movement across the site.  Eggs searches may also be undertaken during March to May.

For those sites within close proximity to ponds, where newts are considered to be breeding, it is preferentially recommended that permission be sought from the adjacent landowner whose grounds contain the pond for a survey to be undertaken.  This will determine whether or not the proposed development site is likely to be affected by great crested newts.  Should permission not be sought for the off site survey, or permission refused due to possible additional responsibility/blight of having newts on their site, the survey may be restricted to terrestrial searches on the development site.  This is best undertaken between February to March and May to June.  The terrestrial searches will aim to encounter newts migrating to breeding ponds, as well as general surveys of hedgerows and potential hibernacula‚Äôs present on site.  A habitat assessment may also be required in conjunction with a terrestrial survey to increase reliance on the survey data.  The terrestrial survey is not the best method as this is not a definitive method of determining presence/absence due to the dispersion of the newts within outlying areas, compared to the concentration within the ponds.  Terrestrial surveys outside the breeding migration time will be considered to have low reliance, however hedgerow, ditch line and hibernacula surveys will provide additional substance to the survey.

Post breeding larvae counts may be undertaken between May and August to determine whether or not great crested newts are present within a pond outside the normal breeding period.  This is undertaken using net surveys and possibly using bottle traps.

Surveys Prior to Ground Investigations

Coopers can also provide a service to check a site terrestrially for newts prior to undertaking ground investigation within sites where newts are considered to be present.  This comprises a walkover survey of the area prior to plant or non-licensed personnel entering the site.  The main purpose of this service is to ensure that newts are not likely to be destroyed during the site investigation.  Should newts be present, these will either be collected and released away from the area of investigation, or areas of the site should have restricted access where plant/excavations are not permitted.

Other Amphibians

Coopers can also survey for other amphibians (common toads, frogs and smooth and palmate newts) should they be sensitive within a proposed development area.

Egg search - Great Crested Newt eggGreat Crested Newt larvae caught in a bottle trapGreat Crested Newts caught in a bottle trapBottle trapPotential breeding pond for newtsPotential breeding pond for newtsCommon toad

COOPERS is the trading name of Coopers (Chester) Limited.
Company registered in England & Wales. Company number 09730429.
Registered office Park House, Sandpiper Court, Chester, CH4 9QU

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