Bat ecology services

Search dog and acoustic surveys

We can provide the complete package of bat ecology services required at wind energy facilities, from the scoping phase through to post-construction monitoring. We are world-leaders in surveying wind turbines using search dogs and acoustic monitoring.

The Bat Ecology Services team have successfully completed surveys at more than 60 wind energy facilities across the UK during the National Bats and Wind Turbines Project. In leading this project, we have unrivalled experience of working with turbine owners and operators, local authorities and statutory nature conservation organisations.

Pre-construction bat surveys are routinely required at most wind energy developments; increasingly, post-construction monitoring for casualties is also required as a condition of planning. We are the first group in the UK to deploy SM2 detectors and deploy trained search dogs for casualty surveys, we also develop site-specific algorithms to minimise the impact of mitigation on productivity.

We can offer:

Analysis and mitigation

  • Fully comprehensive acoustic analysis of sound files collected by our detectors or those of other consultants.
  • Species identification using Kaleidoscope Pro, with manual validation by specialised staff.
  • Estimation of collision risk, and development of site-specific algorithms to tailor mitigation strategies.
  • Reports to meet requirements of planning authorities.

Bat carcass surveys

  • Undertaken by experienced dog/ecologist handler teams, and proven to be much more cost and time efficient than human searches.
  • Underlying casualty rates are estimated by incorporating data on predator removal rates and search efficiency.
  • Bat species identity is confirmed by genetic analysis.
  • Bird carcass surveys can be incorporated.
  • Overseas work possible - all our dogs have vaccinations and passports.

Acoustic monitoring

  • Supply and maintain long-term automated bat detectors which can easily be installed at ground and nacelle-levels of turbines.
  • It would be the owner/operator’s responsibility for placing and removing equipment within the nacelle however this is a simple procedure and we can be on hand to assist.

We would recommend inspection of the nacelle-level detectors after particularly wet or windy weather and also if the equipment were deployed for longer periods - this would incur a further cost. We can also maintain detectors installed by other consultancies.

Bat Ecology Services has been established by Dr Fiona Mathews as a consultancy business arm of the University of Exeter.

Please contact us for further information and quotations.