Protecting Our Wildlife
All species of wild bird, their nests and eggs are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981 and wherever possible you should always try to avoid
harming birds and their nests by timing work to avoid the breeding season or by using methods which deter the birds rather than harm them or their nests.
Further protection measures are given to Schedule 1 birds (eg barn owls) where, in addition to the existing measures under the Wildlife and Countryside Act, it is an offence to intentionally, or by not take enough care to;
- disturb them while they’re nesting, building a nest, in or near a nest that contains their young
- disturb their dependent young
Where it is not possible to avoid disturbing birds and under exceptional cases* the law allows certain exemptions to permit legal activities (such as for felling dangerous trees) and a licence from Natural England will need to be obtained in order to carry out those activities.
* Licences are available for disturbing or harming birds for a limited number of reasons that include:
- preserve public health and safety
- preserve air safety
- do work for science, education or research
- prevent damage to crops or animal feed
- conserve plants and animals (including other wild birds)
- prevent damage to fisheries
- take part in photography, falconry, keeping or breeding birds