Company Network Rail
Blackdown Environmental were instructed by Ground Control on behalf of Network Rail to undertake a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal of trackside vegetation to identify ecological constraints prior to scheduled vegetation management works. Works required the management of trees and woody vegetation adjacent two sections of track along the Falmouth Branch Line.
Blackdown Environmental were contracted to undertake a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA) of trackside vegetation along the Falmouth Branch Line in Cornwall prior to scheduled vegetation management works.
Blackdown’s PTS trained Ecologists walked the extent of the proposed vegetation management works with an accompanying Controller of Site Safety (COSS) to note basic habitat descriptions and potential for legally protected or notable species to be present. This involved searching for evidence of or suitable habitat for a variety of species including bats, dormice, reptiles, birds and badgers, as well as for invasive plant species.
A Precautionary Method of Works and Protected Species Contingency Plan was then devised to ensure scheduled works were undertaken avoiding harm to protected species and habitats. The Precautionary Method of works also detailed safe working practices to avoid damage to nearby sensitive sites, including Sites of Special Scientific Interests (SSSIs).
Essential vegetation management works were then able to be planned in a way that ensured legal requirements were met and impacts to biodiversity were minimised.