BIRD MANAGEMENT PLAN
It is common practice for a Mineral Planning Application involving the wet-working of a gravel-pit under the flightpath of an aerodrome to be conditional upon the production of a Bird Management Plan (BMP), so as to ensure there is no additional risk to aircraft from bird-strike. AEcol approach BMP as follows:
We begin by identifying the situation of the gravel-pit and aerodrome (s) in respect to each other
We then produce an evidence-supported prediction of the bird species known to occur in the locality that are identified as a risk to aircraft due to their size, flight altitude, temporal behaviour and tendency to flock (e.g. swans, geese, ducks and gulls).
We then identify which of the species occurring might exploit the habitats that will be present in the gravel-pit
We then identify the conditions that would least favour the exploitation of the gravel-pit by the bird species for which there exists a reasonable likelihood of occurrence
Then we define management actions that will foster conditions that are unfavourable to those species, particularly with respect to breeding, by habitat manipulation and management intervention
For the remaining species, we define trigger thresholds for action in respect of numbers
The information defined at Item 6 is then used to design a prescriptive surveillance scheme sufficient to detect whether or not the trigger threshold has been exceeded and management is required. Wherever possible, this scheme is so designed that the quarry staff themselves can perform it.
The information at Item 7 is then coupled with a simple recording system in order that the Quarry Manager (QM) has an accurate and complete record of the result of the monitoring.
In order that any issues may be dealt with promptly, we set out the methods of dispersal that will be most practicable in the context of the gravel-pit in order that they may be immediately put into effect by the QM if the trigger threshold is exceeded (i.e. there are too many birds on the site).
Finally, we define a system of review in order that the methods set out within the BMP accord with the most up-to-date guidance and the monitoring itself can be revised if it is found that the bird numbers predicted and set as the trigger thresholds are too low, or two high.