Using eDNA and Traditional Techniques for Effective Great Crested Newt Surveys

Summary

This event offers a full day’s training in the benefits and limitations of the range of accepted methods for surveying GCN populations. Practical sessions will cover protocols for collecting reliable water samples for eDNA* analysis, the range of accepted methods for population class assessment and exploration of alternative methods, focusing on the constraints and benefits of each technique.

Description

This event offers a full day’s training in the benefits and limitations of the range of accepted methods for surveying GCN populations. Practical sessions will cover protocols for collecting reliable water samples for eDNA* analysis (avoiding the risk of contamination which can result in uncertain or false results) the range of accepted methods for population class assessment and exploration of alternative methods, focusing on the constraints and benefits of each technique.

By highlighting the key considerations for combining eDNA analysis with traditional GCN survey techniques delegates will learn how to plan surveys that generate robust methods of work that are proportionate, appropriate and potentially reduce overall survey cost. Techniques explored during this training will be linked with the survey requirements for ecological reporting and mitigation licenses, including Low Impact licenses

New to this year’s course is a look at the sampling of the actual eDNA and testing for the presence of great crested newts using a mobile lab (LAMP – this process is not validated by Natural England but shows how the process works and could present future methods for the detection of great crested newts and other species).

In addition given the extent of the eDNA’s use in the field the course will look at how effective it has been, some of the pitfalls and its potential future.

*eDNA analysis is a new method for species monitoring in water bodies. It can give a quick result from an easily collectable water sample and has recently been approved by Natural Resources Wales and Natural England for the determination of great crested newt (GCN) presence or absence. If results show GCN absence no further surveys are necessary but should presence be established population class assessments must be obtained through a minimum of six surveys using techniques agreed by Natural Resources Wales/ Natural England should a development licence be required.

Who Should Attend?

Ecological consultants and Local Planning Authorities. In particular those holding an EPS licence for great crested newts (or about to apply for one). It is expected that delegates will have knowledge and experience of GCN survey.

Knowledge Level

Intermediate

Learning Outcomes

  • Understanding of the new method for determining GCN presence in ponds using eDNA
  • Understanding of how to take a water sample correctly for eDNA analysis
  • Understanding of how to mix the sample correctly and package the sample for couriering
  • Improved awareness of the constraints and benefits of each survey method.  Methods considered will not only be those applied in the UK but wider methods used in Europe as a means to collect data offering ideas that more efficient and better for the great crested newt!
  • The actual sampling of eDNA and obtaining results – with a look at three years of data collection and the future for eDNA within ecology.

Refreshments

Course fee includes refreshments through the day but lunch is not included.

Key Information

Start date:

Cost:

CIEEM Members: £170 Non-members: £220

Organisation:

CIEEM

Type:

Short

Sector:

Ecology, Workshop & Practical Skills

Location:

Nottinghamshire

Contact Details: