Essex Ecology Services Ltd

Essex Ecology Services LtdEssex Ecology Services Ltd

For immediate advice or a quote, contact: 

Pat Hatch MCIEEM
Consultancy Manager

Tel: 01621 862986
Fax: 01621 862990

Essex Ecology Services Ltd. (EECOS) is a wholly owned subsidiary company of the Essex Wildlife Trust. Our five full time ecologists have a wide range of skills combined with protected species survey licences, as well as keen specialist interests in a range of ecological fields. EECOS has been trading since 1993, having grown from the original Phase 1 Local Wildlife Site (SINC) surveys of Essex in the early 1990s; we have since covered every district within the county and have thereby built up unrivalled knowledge of the county’s flora and fauna. In restricting our services to Essex and neighbouring counties (Suffolk, Hertfordshire, Kent, Cambridgeshire and London), our local knowledge of wildlife helps us to provide a professional and well-informed service to a range of clients. All our profits are returned to the Essex Wildlife Trust at the end of the financial year, to support important conservation and education work.

All five full time ecological staff are members of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) and are guided by the Professional Codes of Conduct. EECOS is a member of the AWTC (Association of Wildlife Trust Consultancies), drawing from experience from 25 other Wildlife Trust consultancies in the UK enables us to collaborate on larger national projects and share experience across county boundaries. EECOS works in particularly close collaboration with the consultancy arms of the Suffolk and Norfolk Wildlife Trust (SWT Ecological Consultants and Norfolk Wildlife Services) providing regional east of England coverage.

Our range of ecological services is as follows:

Ecological Assessments and Services

Most of our ecological assessment work is associated with applications for planning consent. For most schemes a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal is required, although this can be called an Environmental Statement, Ecological Impact Assessment, or Extended Phase 1 Survey by some Local Authorities. We also prepare ecological chapters for Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) and can contribute to EIA screening and scoping reports.
The skills of the EECOS staff members can be applied to all other ecological and wildlife related tasks such as Ecological Clerk of Works and Local wildlife site reviews, as listed below. Please contact us if your requirements are not covered on our pages.

Species Surveys, Licensing and Mitigation

EECOS is able to work with all legally protected species, carrying out targeted surveys, applying for any licences that are needed and completing all of the mitigation or compensation that may be required once planning consent has been obtained. Species surveys are highly seasonal so consideration of requirements at the early stages of a project can avoid lengthy delays later on. 

  • Badgers
  • Barn Owls and other Schedule 1 birds
  • Bats
  • Breeding and wintering birds
  • Dormice and other small mammals
  • Great Crested Newts
  • Invertebrates – terrestrial / aquatic
  • Otters
  • Reptiles
  • Water Voles
  • White-clawed Crayfish


EECOS has experience of completing Ecology and Land Use sections for both BREEAM and Code for Sustainable Homes (CFSH) Assessments, for a variety of sites including schools, industrial developments and residential housing projects. 

  • BREEAM and CFSH Land Use and Ecology Section

Farm Environment Plan (FEP)

A Farm Environment Plan (FEP) is required for any Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) application to Natural England. EECOS has completed FEPs for a range of successful HLS applications covering various habitats and farming methods.

  • FEP survey for farm HLS

Habitat and Botanical

With abundant experience in the field of botany and habitat assessment, EECOS carries out a range of botanical surveys and management services as listed below. We also carry out practical habitat and estate management, with our own qualified brush cutter and chainsaw users, and can draw upon the considerable experience and resources of Essex Wildlife Trust’s Reserves Team.

  • Botanical surveys
  • Conservation Management Plans
  • Habitat creation
  • Habitat / estate management
  • Hedgerow surveys (Hedgerow Regulations)
  • Invasive Weed Assessments
  • NVC (National Vegetation Classification)
  • Phase 1 Habitat Surveys

Significant recent contracts include:

  • Phase 1 (PEA) surveys at various sites across Essex, Suffolk and Kent; this includes the route along water pipelines, pylon routes, the grounds around water treatment works facilities and several residential sites.
  • Great Crested Newt surveys of over 20 ponds along a water pipeline route near Barsham in Suffolk.
  • Bat surveys of a range of sites including a 16th Century barn as well as 20th century residential properties.
  • Bat licences and mitigation for a range of sites throughout Essex.
  • Code for Sustainable Homes ecological assessments (LE1 - LE4) for residential sites; BREEAM surveys within the University of Essex and for a water company call centre.
  • Protected species surveys and mitigation along two major water pipeline routes in Essex and Suffolk, covering Great Crested Newts, bats, Badgers, reptiles and Water Voles as well as ‘Important’ hedges under Hedgerow Regulations.
  • Management of the landscape contract on the verges of the A130 between Chelmsford and Basildon for Countyroute.
  • Local Wildlife Site Phase 1 surveys of Epping, Harlow and Uttlesford; previous district / borough surveys have included Chelmsford, Colchester, Maldon, Tendring, Southend, Castle Point, Basildon, Thurrock, Brentwood and Braintree.
  • Surveys of White-clawed Crayfish and establishing the first safe ‘Ark’ sites for native crayfish in Essex and Norfolk.
  • Design and planning for a major reedbed restoration scheme at Hanningfield Reservoir.
  • Badger surveys and mitigation in Dungeness, Kent, as well as in Castle Point and Maldon District in Essex.
  • A suite of protected species surveys required in Little Baddow (Dormouse, bat, reptile and Great Crested Newt surveys).
  • Breeding bird surveys of the Birch Living Landscape area.
  • Water Vole mitigation within a borrowdyke near Southminster.
  • Invertebrate surveys on Layer Breton Heath and a brownfield site in Lowestoft.
  • Water fowl survey on Hanningfield reservoir SSSI.