Official standard for woodland bat surveying released

The long-awaited British Standard for surveying bats in trees and woodland, BS 8596, has now been published.

Image: Steve Brace
Image: Steve Brace

Aimed at woodland managers, arboriculturists, planning officers, developers, ecological consultants and others, the work brings together guidance on all aspects of surveying trees for bat roosts and on what action to take if they are found, whether at the scale of individual garden trees, woodlands earmarked for development, or forestry management.

Its publisher the British Standards Institution (BSI) said: "If you're directly involved in managing trees or woodland, BS 8596 will help you manage regulatory risk – giving the assurance that you've followed best practice in assessing the presence of bats, and offering guidance on when the services of a bat specialist might be needed."

All UK bats and their roosts are protected by the law, placing a legal reuirement on tree and woodland managers to follow best practice in avoiding killing, injuring or disturbing bats or damaging or destroying their roosts.

BSI has also published a free "micro guide" explaining BS 8596 to non-specialists. Both area available from the BSI website.

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