30 January 2016
This weekend, 30th- 31st January 2016, is RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch. A free and easy way for everyone to get closer to nature and report about the wildlife in their garden or local park. To participate, visit the RSPB website.
Joshua Stafford, one of our Consultant Ecologists based in our London office, will definitely be taking part. Joshua has a passion for ornithology and herpetology. He is responsible for undertaking a range of species surveys on sites, gauging and assessing potential impacts and devising avoidance or mitigation methods to reduce these effects.
“I’ve always been interested in ecology with a focus on ornithology and herpetology.”
I studied for a degree in Natural History, Ecology and Conservation at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge. I’ve always had great interest in these subject areas but wanted to understand the other fields that make up the environmental discipline.
I’ve always been interested in ecology, and more particularly in ornithology and herpetology, after spending a lot of my childhood watching birds and pond dipping, catching frogs, toads and common lizards. After university, I started my ringing* training with the British Trust for Ornithology and have since been to Sweden and Spain to catch birds. I really enjoy ringing in my spare time as it gives me the opportunity to examine birds up close. This has led me to obtaining my barn owl licence. I monitor a number of boxes around my local area, recording eggs and chicks. This also allows me to check and survey buildings for the presence of barn owls. I also volunteer with a charity called Marine Life, undertaking cetacean and seabird surveys on various ferry routes.
(*ringing consists in attaching a ring to a bird’s leg to study their behaviour. It is done by trained individuals with the utmost consideration for the welfare of the birds)
"As a consultant ecologist, I’m responsible for undertaking a range of species surveys on sites, gauging and assessing potential impacts and devising avoidance or mitigation methods to reduce these affects.”
I’ve had the opportunity to work on a number of projects which I’m proud to be associated with. Getting the chance to work on a major power station was by far the largest and most exciting project I’ve worked on so far. It required over 40 visits to the site throughout March to September, with reptiles, birds, bats, great crested newts and water voles surveys all undertaken over this time
I have also worked with the London ecology team and other teams further afield on projects that include the defence, residential, renewable energy, energy infrastructure and commercial sectors.
Ecology – here to help
We have one of the UK’s largest teams of professional ecologists and are able to resource significant schemes in-house at short notice, with appropriately qualified and experienced people.
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Owl photo by Joshua Stafford