enitial Surveys for Great Crested Newts

Client: Major Waste Operator
Location: South-East
Services: Great Crested Newt Survey, species translocation and habitat management

Project Overview

Since 2013 enitial have carried out Great Crested Newt (GCN) surveys at an operational landfill site in East Anglia. As part of the planning conditions six surveys are to be completed each year between March and June. In this case torch surveys were carried out in accordance with Natural England methodologies. During the planning process for an extension of the landfill GCN surveys were carried out which highlighted a local populous likely to be adversely affected by the development. As part of the development conditions a GCN habitat mitigation feature was installed and the inhabiting GCN’s translocated to this new feature.

Once the population of GCNs had been moved they were surveyed annually to ensure they are thriving in their new habitat. As newts are nocturnal and they lay their eggs on waterborne plant matter, carrying out population size assessments involves shining a powerful lamp in to the park in the darkness of night. Whilst slowly walking around the perimeter of the pond the number and sex of GCNs was observed and recorded.


Following the completion of the survey enitial submitted a report to the client detailing population size and class, including notes and recommendations. Numbers found on each annual survey are compared with previous years in order to determine the health of the population and whether any remedial works to the habitat are required.