Protected Species Surveys

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Phase 1 Habitat Surveys
Pre-Purchase Site Assessment
River Surveys
Hedgerow Surveys
Invasive Species Surveys
Bryophyte Surveys

Environmental Impact Assessment


Habitat Creation
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Terrestrial Habitats

Hibernacula & Refuge Construction

PENNINE ecological design and construct hibernacula for amphibians and reptiles.

Typically this is a requirement in relation to mitigation for great crested newt licence work or developments affecting reptiles.

Hibernacula are purpose built permanent refuges or overwintering hibernation sites for amphibians and reptiles.

We follow Natural England guidance when creating hibernacula, as indicated in the great crested newt mitigation guidelines, see page 42 for guidance in the file which can be downloaded by following this link to Natural England Website

Hibernacula are typically located on dry land, ideally slightly raised and away from flood prone areas. They are constructed by using piles of inert rubble and ideally logs with a loose fill of soil. Care must be taken to ensure that entrance points are provided at or near the base of the structure to allow amphibian / reptile entry and exit points. The top of the structure is capped with turf.

The aim is to provide a damp / dark relatively stable and humid environment which is protected from the effects of seasonal temperature and climatic variations.    

Log pile refuges can also be created to provide valuable temporary habitats, particularly for amphibians.

Example contracts include (see also; Great Crested Newts)

  • Manchester Airport Group

    Hibernacula design and creation for many great crested newt licence schemes including; Concorde visitor centre, Runway 2 works, extensions to Aviation Viewing Park and several car park schemes.

  • Chorley Borough Council

    Conservation licence work creating new ponds and terrestrial habitats at Hic Bibi LNR.

  • BAE Systems

    Creation of ponds and hibernacula in relation to site development works.

Wildflower Meadow Creation

PENNINE ecological can create wildflower meadows using native species for any site or development. We have a team of experienced ground contractors who can undertake this work.

Species mixes are carefully selected to ensure that seeds used are from plants common to the local area and to ensure that no rare or uncommon species are introduced.

Seed mixes are tailored according to the prevailing habitat conditions at the site, these can include;

  • Meadow grassland; acidic / neutral / calcareous 

  • Damp meadow / marshy grassland / pond margin

  • Woodland edge / hedgerows

  • Cornfield annuals

Ground and soil preparation are vital, particularly when creating a permanent native meadow. Low soil fertility is essential to avoid competition from more undesirable species such as vigorous grasses, thistles and common nettle.


Example contracts include:

  • Chorley Borough Council

    Species and management advice for various wildflower meadows on council owned land and local nature reserves.

  • Highways Agency

    A5/M6 Toll; Species and management advice for various wildflower meadows and wetland attenuation ponds for this major road scheme.

  • Harrison Design

    Development: St Helens Cemetery & Crematorium – Habitat Creation & Management Plan 2009-2028.

Native tree and hedge planting

We provide advice on native tree and hedge species for mitigation on development sites or habitat enhancement / creation schemes. Our ground contractors have worked on numerous schemes including development sites and conservation projects across NW England.

Example contracts include

  • BAE Systems

    Samlesbury Aerodrome; Native tree and hedge planting to enhance amphibian and bird habitats.