Managing ground nesting birds at logistics centre construction site

Preventing a halt to operations from ground nesting birds

Works had begun preparing the site for construction of a large logistics centre for a leading property management company.

Through several breeding bird surveys, it had been identified, that historically, several species of ground nesting birds were frequenting the site and that there was every possibility they would breed if left without mitigation. As these ground nesting birds are protected by law, should they nest on site, there was a risk operations would have to stop, or, be significantly delayed until any young had fledged.

Project overview

NBC sought to advise a programme that would manage that risk as far as possible, and, minimise the potential for these protected birds to nest. It was deemed essential to the success of the project, to introduce a bird mitigation programme which would encourage ground nesting birds onto to an alternate breeding site where they were more likely to be successful, and, ensure success of the species in subsequent years.

When dealing with ground nesting birds such Skylarks (Alauda Arvensis,) it essential that mitigation be introduced that covered all daylight hours. Our experienced mitigation team, using both specially trained dogs and Falcons, were put to work prior to nesting season commencing (typically March to August) to ensure the best possible chance of success.

Our solution

Earth works were due to start in April, however, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, these works were delayed and NBC asked to continue their programme until further notice – our specialist team worked all hours of daylight, 7 days a week, to ensure the objective was achieved.

Earth works were later confirmed for a June start – the client attended site at the end of May to ensure these works could go ahead and to assess the site. NBC had successfully carried out the mitigation as agreed and were in a position to hand a nest free site over to senior engineer and project manager.

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