All British reptiles are protected from killing or injury under the law and reptile surveys are required where potential reptile habitat will be adversely impacted by a project. Generally, the Preliminary Ecological Appraisal will identify when a reptile survey is required. Reptile surveys can be undertaken on warm, dry days between March and October.
A reptile presence/ absence survey is normally sufficient to support most planning applications. A presence/ absence survey involves instating artificial refugia in suitable habitats across the site. The refugia warm up in the sun and attract reptiles. Once established, the refugia are checked on seven separate occasions and any reptiles found are identified and recorded.