To ensure that biodiversity and geology is conserved
and enhanced during any active phases opportunities to
contribute substantially to the achievement of targets in LBAPs
by way of habitat creation and geological conservation in restoration
schemes. Restoration requirements can be linked to the creation
of priority habitat to meet UKBAP targets. Mineral planning permissions
typically have a long life-span and the active extraction phase
can continue for many years. These active phases can be very beneficial
for biodiversity and geological conservation. Specific habitats
that benefit specialist species can be created in an active quarry
and previously unknown or unrecorded geological features can be
uncovered. Therefore it is good practice to ensure that biodiversity
and geology is conserved and enhanced during any active phases
in addition to those relating to restoration schemes.
Never underestimate the value of your site to wildlife, many
species are able to adapt to quarry environment and associated
human activity and take advantage of the temporary habitats that
can result from the extraction process. During most operations
there is a proportion of the land/habitat retained which also
acts a refuge for wildlife and it is important to manage this
land for biodiversity.
Awareness is the key to managing for wildlife during the operation
of a site, and will not be difficult issue for the site manager.
Being conscious of the site’s wildlife locations and a flexible
approach will enable the site to be managed without loss to colonising
flora and fauna.
A variety of bird species breeds in quarries and pits including
the Sand martin, Ring Plover, Peregrine falcon, Kestrel, Raven.
Leaving areas of suitable habitat undisturbed during the breeding
season can encourage these birds to nest in non-operational areas.
In this way, they can be encouraged to nest where they will not
conflict with quarry operations. Some of these birds like the
peregrine falcon are territorial and will return to the same ledge
to breed each spring.
Plant Native Trees and Shrubs And When
Possible Always Plant Local Provenance!
When selecting tree species for a site, take into account soil
type, drainage, exposure and look at the trees growing in the
surrounding location. Native trees and shrubs support a wider
range of plants and animals than introduced species; maintain
local character and conservation value. They thrive in particularly
harsh local conditions and are more likely to survive and flourish
than most introduced species. The genetic makeup of local provenance
native trees and shrubs ensures that they are better adapted to
local conditions, as they are better suited to Northern Ireland’s
soil conditions, temperature fluctuations, high rainfall, local
competitive flora and local diseases and populations of grazing
insect larvae: Did you know that most of our ‘native’
trees bought from tree nurseries are sourced from Eastern Europe.
Bud burst and fruit ripening is dependent on seasonal timing.
Imported trees come into leaf and fruit at different times than
local stock, upsetting the fine balance between native trees and
the wildlife they support.
Planting bare roots should commence in the winter months (between
late autumn to mid-February). Good ground preparation and aftercare
will be important to establishment. Please contact Laverne Bell
for a list of local provenance suppliers.
species & biodiversity
a hedge for biodiversity
Measures guidance notes 4.3 Biodiversity
advice sheet here
Sand martins are attracted to quarries and pits where stockpiled
faces and spoil heaps provide suitable nesting sites. They are
one of the first spring migrants to appear, arriving between mid-March
and Mid-April to breed, before moving south from late July to
September to winter in sub-Saharan Africa. Sand martins are listed
on the Amber List of the UK birds of conservation. Current factors
affecting the species are droughts in wintering grounds in Africa
and loss of nesting sites and young broods as a result of habitat
destruction / disturbance. Be aware of nesting sand martins on
your site and inform your staff. We can play a part in them breeding
safely and increasing their populations to withstand any future
threats or declines.
Wildlife Law and You document here