Surveys and assessments are undertaken to establish the value of a site and the species and habitats it contains. Such surveys and assessments are now often a necessary part of planning applications, allowing local planning authorities to determine the impacts associated with proposed developments. They can also help establish whether more detailed surveys are needed (such as for protected species), allow site operations to proceed and inform habitat or species management decisions.

Apex ecology Ltd recognise the importance of such survey and assessment and provide the following services:

Initial 'scoping' survey

Scoping surveys are used as an initial means of inspection to identify potential ecological issues, such as the presence of valuable habitats or protected or invasive species. They are most applicable on large sites or where a range of species and habitats is likely to occur.

'Phase 1' and 'Extended Phase 1' survey

The Phase 1 survey method is the most widely used and accepted standard for mapping and assessing large areas of habitat. Extended Phase 1 survey builds on the methodology by taking into account information on faunal species and provides a means of baseline ecological assessment.

Species Survey

There are several hundred species of animals and plants that are afforded legal protection in the UK, although only a few of these species are regularly encountered.

Apex Ecology undertake survey and assessment for bats, great crested newt, hazel dormouse, badger, water vole, otter, common reptiles, white-clawed crayfish, barn owl and breeding birds. We can advise on the level of survey needed, the methods involved and timing implications. Please ask us if you require surveys for a species not listed as we may be able to assist or involve a specialist. Our staff hold survey licences for bats, great created newts, white-clawed crayfish, barn owl and hazel dormouse.

We also undertake surveys and assessment for Biodiversity Action Plan species, including brown hare and harvest mouse and specialist groups of terrestrial invertebrates.

Habitat Assessment

We undertake surveys of a range of habitats and provide assessments against national and local designation and conservation criteria. We are experienced in the assessment of hedgerows in conjunction with the Hedgerow Regulations and evaluating sites against local nature conservation designation criteria. We can also provide advice on the management and conservation of a range of habitats and species.

Impact Assessment and BREEAM Assessments

We are experienced in using recognised standard criteria to identify and assess the impacts of proposals on habitats and species, as well as biodiversity in general. We are also able to contribute to Environmental Impact Assessments. We also assist our clients with BREEAM assessments using the Code for Sustainable Homes.


We can provide advice and design mitigation for a range of habitats and species. Please see the Licensing Page for information on the services we provide relating to mitigation.

Site supervision

We are experienced in providing on-site supervision and assistance with a range of work, including translocation and rescue of plant and animal species, installation of mitigation features and site clearance and searching.


We are experienced in delivering training on protected species to the IEEM, local authorities and architectural societies. We are happy to discuss ways of tailoring our training to suit your requirements.

Registered in England and Wales, Company Number 05675217
Registered office: C/O Howsons, Winton House, Stoke Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST4 2RW
VAT registration number 881 1515 30