The Dormouse is a small nocturnal mammal which can be found in woodland and species rich hedgerows, particularly in the south of England. An increasingly rare species due to habitat loss, fragmentation and the isolation of populations it is fully protected under Wildlife & Countryside Act (1981) and the Habitats Regulations (2010). This makes it an offence to kill or injure Dormice as well as disturb them in their place of rest (i.e. habitat).
If a development is likely to affect areas of woodland or linked hedgerows, then a Dormouse survey will be required to establish the presence or likely absence. Methods typically involve;
If it is possible ecological mitigation for Dormice should be avoided and the area's of hedgerow or woodland retained and protected during development. If this is not possible then a European Protected Species Licence would be required from Natural England and a detailed strategy of mitigation and compensation implemented.