Clients commission ESL to undertake reptile surveys where reptiles are known to be present in an area or when habitats are suitable for reptile species. This is determined by one of our expert ecologists.
The survey methodology includes a walked transect survey where we deploy and check artificial refugia. The walking survey involves the ecologist taking a pre-determined transect line along all eco-tones (areas of different structure) where reptiles would most likely be found basking. Along this route, the ecologist will check the previously deployed artificial refugia, including any natural refugia such rocks or log piles. This method is repeated over the season.
Schedule your survey at the right time
Reptile surveys should ideally be undertaken at very specific times to maximise reptile detectability, which is generally between April and May. Late August to late September can also be useful for detecting juvenile reptiles but July and early August are generally less favourable months for surveying due to the days being hotter. Peak air temperature should be between 9-20°C. Bright sunshine is favourable on cooler days and hazy or intermittent sunshine is favourable when warmer.
Our ecologists will advise on survey design and mitigation, ensuring your project continues smoothly and, importantly, without holdups. We design mitigation on a site by site and species basis, providing the necessary solutions to ensure a successful outcome for client and wildlife alike. Recent mitigation projects include grass snake and common lizard for a waste water treatment site in Cumbria.
To avoid any delay to your schedule you should plan for the survey season at the beginning of your planning & development process. This means getting us involved early. Mitigation should only be undertaken when reptile species are active and not during the hibernation periods. You could face delays if you don’t schedule in your reptile survey early enough.