Dartmoor is also host to a large number of rare and notable species, some of which have been protected at the international level under the Habitats Regulations 1994 – known as European Protected Species (EPS). (external link, opens in new window) Those found on Dartmoor are bats, dormice and otters. The act prohibits to kill, injure, capture or disturb a European Protected Species, or to damage or destroy their place of shelter without prior consultation with Natural England. (external link, opens in new window). A EPS license might need to be obtained. The Dartmoor National Park Authority must give due weight to the presence of a European Protected Species on a development site to reflect the requirements of the Directive, in reaching planning decisions. Permission can only be granted where there is
- no satisfactory alternative
- it’s in the interest of preserving public health or public safety or other imperative reason of overriding public interest, and
- it will not be detrimental to the maintenance of the population of the species concerned at a favourable conservation status in their natural range
Further protected species present on Dartmoor include reptiles, nesting birds and badgers. Reptiles and nesting birds are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, as amended by the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000. (external link, opens in new window) It is illegal to harm or kill reptiles, or to damage or destroy an occupied birds nest. Also, it is illegal to disturb a nesting site of a bird species listed on Schedule 1 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Badgers are protected under the Protection of Badgers Act 1992 (external link, opens in new window) against injury and killing, and the damage or destruction of a sett.
If a proposal has potential to impact on a protected species, the Authority Ecologist will make recommendations on how to progress: a professional protected species survey may be required, which will outline avoidance, mitigation or compensation measures.
Have you thought about how your application can make a positive contribution to wildlife? Read our information on how you can incorporate wildlife into your application.
For further information and advice contact:
Dartmoor National Park Authority,
Parke, Bovey Tracey,
Newton Abbot, Devon
Tel: (01626) 832093
Office hours 9am – 5pm
Natural England Devon Team (external site, opens new window)
Tel: 0300 060 1110
Natural England Wildlife Management and Licensing Service (external site, opens new window)
Wildlife Licesing Unit
Block 3, Government Buildings
Westbury on Trym
Tel: 0845 601 4523
You can also view a list of consultants who undertake ecological work on Dartmoor
The content of these pages aims to provide some general information and is not intended to be a definitive statement of the law or your rights. Whilst every care has been taken to ensure accuracy, DNPA cannot accept responsibility for any inaccurate, incomplete or out of date information, or any loss or damage that may result from reliance on it. You are advised to check the current situation for the specific circumstances of your property before commencing any project or incurring any expenditure.
Please Note: these contact details are provided to help you to find consultants, suppliers and organisations who work in the Dartmoor area. DNPA does not give any warranty or guarantee in respect of the people and organisations listed, or their work. You must satisfy yourself that anyone you choose is suitable for your purposes. While we will endeavour to ensure that the information remains accurate and up to date, we cannot accept any responsibility for information that is found to be inaccurate, misleading, or out of date.