Breeding Bird Surveys
Bird surveys: Breeding bird surveys are conducted in suitable habitat within 500m of the site boundary using a modified version of the BTO/JNCC Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) to record the number and species of all adult birds on the survey site. The site is visited on a minimum of four occasions, three at dawn and one at dusk. On each visit a predetermined transect is walked at slow pace and all birds encountered along the transect are identified by sight or by sound and recorded on a location map using the standard BTO codes.
During these breeding bird surveys details notes are taken regarding details such as sex, age (juvenile or adult) and activity. Where possible birds are not recorded more than once. Any nests, or suspected nest locations, located during the course of the survey are marked on the map. Weather conditions are monitored to ensure that it is not too windy or rainy during the breeding bird survey. For more information on the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) methodology please click here.
Breeding Bird surveys – Wind Farm Sites
We also have extensive experience of Vantage Point Surveys for proposed wind farm sites. Breeding raptor studies are undertaken using standard methodologies (i.e. SNH methods). We have extensive experience in relation to Hen Harriers, and are currently undertaking Hen Harrier Surveys throughout Ireland and Northern Ireland. Our surveyors also have vast experienced in carrying out vantage point surveys following standard methodology such as Scottish Natural Heritage’s manual ‘Recommended bird survey methods to inform impact assessment of onshore wind farms‘.
We also regularly undertake breeding bird surveys for other priority species, including Red Grouse, Merlin, Golden Plover, Curlew, Peregrine Falcon, and Lapwing. ECOFACT staff have vast experience in the preparation of ornitholgical impact assessments for proposed wind farm developments. We also have extensive experience in preparing Article 6 Appropriate Assessments (or Natura Impact Statements) for wind farm sites potentially affecting Special Protection Areas (and other Natura 2000 sites).