The great crested newt is fully protected under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended) and Schedule 2 of The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 (as amended) making it a European Protected Species.
Great crested newts use both aquatic and terrestrial habitat. Adults breed in ponds during the spring and then emerge onto land, spending the summer resting, foraging and dispersing before hibernating through the winter. Larvae take around 4 months to develop, emerging as juveniles typically from around August. Immature newts then remain on land for most of the next 2-4 years until they reach sexual maturity.
Our surveyors are leading regional consultants in relation to this important protected species who hold survey licences and development licences for this species and have contributed to important Natural England research studies in relation to the species.
We undertake surveys for any size of organisation including; householders, developers, local authorities and government bodies and undertake surveys strictly in accordance with standard Natural England methods. These are ‘Presence and Absence Surveys’ and where the species is found to be present ‘Population Size Class Assessment Surveys’.
Great Crested Newt Survey Season: Presence & Absence Survey:
Four separate survey visits to each waterbody are required, each visit must use at least three methods (preferably: torch light survey, egg search, bottle trapping or where one of these methods is not possible netting can be used as a substitute). At least 50% of the survey must be between mid-April and mid-May. Remaining surveys can be undertaken in any of the above periods, although ideally these should be spread over the survey season.
If great crested newts are discovered, then an additional 2 rounds of survey are required making a total of 6 rounds of survey. This then provides sufficient data to determine ‘Population Size Class Assessment’ which is a requirement when applying for a Natural England Development Licence.