To reduce the effects of road building and other developments on badgers, we have been involved in a number of activities:
Local authorities, utility companies, developers and their agents often request information about badgers when they are drawing up their plans. We have provided reports based on our badger survey database, so that steps can be taken to protect badgers when plans are drawn up. We also get to know in advance about proposals for developments which might affect badgers.
Commenting on development plans
Planning authorities sometimes approach us for comments on planning applications which may affect badgers. This provides us with an opportunity to highlight any problems which those applications might cause for badgers. In some cases we may object to a planning application if it is clear that badgers will be adversely affected by the proposals. However it is rare for a development to be turned down because badgers are present.
Working with developers
In the past we have worked with the Highways Agency on the Brackley bypass. As a result, a very successful badger tunnel was installed when the road was built. In 2005 we repaired gaps in the wire mesh which was allowing badgers to get onto the road.
We have also acted on behalf of developers on several occasions, where developments have required the destruction of badger setts. Evicting badgers from their homes seems a strange thing for a badger protection group to do. However, when it was clear that the destruction of the setts in question was inevitable, we chose to carry out the work ourselves so that we could be sure that the job was done properly, with no harm coming to the badgers. In the case of one quarry development, our work included the construction of an artificial badger sett, before the badgers were excluded from their own sett.
All of our badger exclusion / sett destruction operations have been carried out under licence from English Nature (now Natural England), the statutory nature conservation agency for England.