Prelim Eco Assessments

What is a Preliminary Ecological Assessment? How is it prepared?

A preliminary ecological assessment includes a desk study of published information, maps and other data available for a site or its surrounding area. This information assists in the identification of ecological constraints of the area. The desk survey is supplemented by a brief site visit to map the habitats and other ecological features present on site. Detailed survey work for specific species or water sampling is not generally completed at this stage. The results of the preliminary ecological assessment are presented with a view to guiding possible development on site. The report includes constraints maps and provides recommendations at an early stage in the design process. The preliminary assessment also offers more specific guidance as to the amount of additional fieldwork that may be required to complete a full ecological assessment as part of an EIS or stand alone report.

In what circumstances is a Preliminary Ecological Assessment prepared?

Preliminary Ecological Assessments are generally completed at the master planning stage or when considering the development potential of a site. A Preliminary Ecological Assessment can inform the design process of a development proposal by highlighting ecological constraints in the early phases of the project life cycle.

When are Preliminary Ecological Assessments conducted? How long do they take?

Preliminary Ecological Assessments can generally be conducted at any time of the year as detailed site information is not required at this stage in the assessment process. However it is recommended that where possible site visits are conducted in the summer season, when most floral and faunal species are most easily observed in the field. Depending on the site, it may be more appropriate to conduct a site visit at other times of the year such as at sites hosting wintering wildfowl. Normally a preliminary ecological assessment can be completed in quite a short space of time owing to the fact that in-depth survey work is not conducted at this stage in the assessment process
Newsletter Sign Up
Enter your email below to subscribe to the McCarthy Keville & O'Sullivan newsletter