Ecological Consultancy

Professional services

First Ecology

Hazel dormouse (Muscardinus avellanarius)being weighed during dormouse survey - Terry Whittaker

The role of First Ecology

First Ecology is the consulting subsidiary of the Somerset Wildlife Trust; a rapidly developing practice committed to upholding best practice standards whilst also achieving pragmatic ecological project outcomes. They have established a broad client base which extends across public, private and commercial sectors and provide technical advice and support on development, research, conservation and management schemes across the UK.

First Ecology are experts in the delivery of high quality cost-efficient habitat and species services, and all profits are invested back into Somerset Wildlife Trust work, protecting wildlife for the future. 

What does First Ecology do?

First Ecology provides ecological consultancy, protected species surveys, planning support and land management services to a wide range of clients.

Landscape

Vegetation and habitat surveys form an essential basis for site assessment. Knowledge of the habitats present on a site enables the identification of those with conservation interest and those with the potential to support notable and protected species. A habitat survey can also provide monitoring data and inform management regimes.

First Ecology offers:

  • Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA)
  • Wildlife survey
  • Biodiversity survey
  • National Vegetation Classification (NVC)
  • Bryophyte survey: mosses, liverworts and hornworts
  • Lower plant survey: grasses, sedges, rushes and ferns
  • Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA)
  • Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)
  • River habitat survey
  • Code for Sustainable Homes
  • Hedgerow survey
  • Arboricultural services
  • Land management plans
  • Woodland surveys
  • Woodland management plans
  • Woodland grant scheme applications

Ecology

Protected species require special consideration in development and conservation projects.

A detailed survey provides site-specific data and this information forms the basis for the preparation of licence applications, the design and implementation of targeted mitigation and robust monitoring strategies.

First Ecology offers surveys for the following:

  • Badgers - Legal protection: Protection of Badgers Act 1992
  • Bats - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010
  • Breeding birds - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010
  • Hazel dormice - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010
  • Great crested newts - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010
  • Invertebrates - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010
  • Otters - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010
  • Reptiles - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981
  • Water voles - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981
  • White-clawed crayfish - Legal protection: Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981

Arboriculture

First Ecology offers: 

  • Tree surveys
  • Arboricultural impact assessments
  • Tree constraints plans
  • Arboricultural method statements
  • Tree protection plans
  • Tree safety and risk assessments
  • Expert Tree surgery
  • Woodland management plans

  • Ancient and veteran tree management plans

  • Forest Management to the UK Forestry Standard and UK Woodland Assurance Standard
  • Timber resource assessment and marketing

  • Continuous cover or near-to-nature forestry

  • Ancient semi-natural woodland management
  • New woodland creation

  • Climate change adaptation and species selection

  • Wood carbon and wood fuel assessment
  • Countryside stewardship grants and felling licences

  • Education and training