RAUK - Archived Forum - Survey Data Shelf Life

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Survey Data Shelf Life:

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Jimmy Dale
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Joined: 19 Nov 2009
No. of posts: 2


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Posted: 19 Nov 2009
As far as I am aware, reptile survey data submitted to a local planning authority for consideration as a document to inform the planning process is valid for two years from the date when the data was collected.

Can anyone tell me whete I can find the piece of legislation / guidance / advisory note which staes that survey data is valid for two years?
South Essex Stepping Stones
Buglife
www.buglife.org.uk
herpetologic2
Senior Member
Joined: 15 Jun 2004
No. of posts: 1369


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Posted: 19 Nov 2009
We would have to check the relevant documents - Herp
Workers Manual, Froglife advice sheet ten, English
Nature's guidelines for developers etc.

I would suggest that survey data over the required amount
of time say 15 visits over an entire reptile season would
remain valid for many more years if the situation has not
changed on the ground. Adders, grass snakes and slow-
worms are all relatively long lived so it would depend on
how many animals were found during the original survey
and what specific features are present which are
important to the local ecology of the reptile population.

I think that it is an arbitrary number plucked out of the
air. Personally I would want to as much information on
reptiles over two years as possible - so if a rolling
programme of reptile survey visits occurs every other
year that would be better to get an assessment of the
reptile population.

Reptile populations vary each year, from month to month
and from day to day. Effectively a survey is out of date
as soon as it has been completed the situation could be
very different the next season.

It is important to take a measured approach to effort -
if things have changed then further survey work would
help inform decisions on the ground.

It is down to the experience of the surveyor to decide
whether the survey data stands after two years.

J
Vice Chair of ARG UK - self employed consultant -
visit ARG UK & Alresford Wildlife
Jimmy Dale
Member
Joined: 19 Nov 2009
No. of posts: 2


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Posted: 21 Nov 2009
Thanks very much for that. Unfortunately I would be tempted to question the quality of the larger portion data generated to accompany a planning application - but hey perhaps I'm just a bit of a perfectionist.

So the 2 years business - is this just a matter of good practise or have you heard anyone else say the same thing?


  
South Essex Stepping Stones
Buglife
www.buglife.org.uk
Matt Harris
Senior Member
Joined: 03 Jun 2003
No. of posts: 196


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Posted: 23 Nov 2009
[QUOTE=Jimmy Dale] Thanks very much for that. Unfortunately I would be tempted to question the quality of the larger portion data generated to accompany a planning application - but hey perhaps I'm just a bit of a perfectionist. So the 2 years business - is this just a matter of good practise or have you heard anyone else say the same thing?لل
[/QUOTE]

I've never heard of a 2-year 'shelf life', nor seen any guidance to this effect, but then I've only worked in local government in Wales.

Sounds to me like something a consultancy firm or group of firms have come up with unilaterally.

Having a fixed deadline like this is daft if you ask me; each case should be taken on its merits, depending on the species concerned, the conditions under which the survey was taken etc etc.
Gwent Amphibian and Reptile Group (GARG)

- Survey Data Shelf Life

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