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Planning for Biodiversity

Providing information and guidance on how to integrate planning and development while looking after our ecological assets in Dorset.

Planning applications

In order to comply with all relevant government legislation on biodiversity a Biodiversity Appraisal scheme has been set up in Dorset. You may need to have a bat and/or biodiversity survey carried out prior to applying for planning permission.

Ecology surveys

Even if a planning application is not necessary works involving the following should be subject to an ecological assessment:

  • hedgerow removal
  • works within 10 metres of a watercourse or 500 metres from a pond
  • works to bridges, underground structures and tunnels
  • works on a designated wildlife site
  • works involving demolition
  • barn conversions
  • works involving internal and external alterations to roof structures

A Ecological Survey Season Guide (pdf, 36kb) (opens in a new window) provides a summary of the optimum periods for surveys according to species.

Advice notes and guidance sheets

A series of advice notes and guidance sheets are available on protected species (for example, bats, otters and badgers), non-native invasive species and habitats in Dorset, with best practice guidance.

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