The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended) makes it an offence, amongst other things, to: i) plant or otherwise cause to grow in the wild any plant that is included in Part II of Schedule 9; ii) release or allow to escape into the wild any animal which is of a kind which is not ordinarily resident in and is not a regular visitor to Great Britain in a wild state, or is included in Part I of Schedule 9 of the Act.
The presence of Schedule 9 species is an important consideration in any construction or habitat management project. A wide variety of everyday activities can lead to the spread of these species, many of which can grow from small fragments of root, stem or leaf material, or can colonise rapidly by seeding. Plant material can be moved around on tyres, tools or footwear, both within the site and beyond, and the disposal of cleared vegetation in an inappropriate location or manner can lead to the establishment of new invasive colonies.
Ponds and other wetland habitats are particularly threatened by invasive weeds, their rapid spread enabled by the flow of water. These include Himalayan Balsam (aka Indian Balsam), Giant Hogweed, Japanese Knotweed, Floating Pennywort and New Zealand Pigmyweed aka Swamp Stonecrop (Crassula helmsii).
The identification of these species can be difficult with many lookalikes or closely related native species. EECOS can undertake thorough surveys of sites to record and map the presence of those species covered by the legislation or any other potential problem species. We can then provide advice on the safe clearance and disposal of plant material in line with current best practice guidelines.
If you require a quote please send an email to us at firstname.lastname@example.org including a brief description of what is proposed, timescales, site plans and any correspondence received from the Local Planning Authority. Alternatively you can contact us in the office on 01621 862986. We can carry out invasive weed assessments in Essex and surrounding counties, including Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, Kent and London.