The University of Aberdeen's Lighthouse Field Station recently purchased three Wildlife Acoustics SM2M autonomous acoustic recorders through Baker Consultants, to monitor the soundscape in the Moray Firth and estimate noise levels in the area that are associated with the various anthropogenic activities taking place throughout the summer season.
Our clients stories
Bay of Fundy, Canada - North Atlantic Right Whales
The purpose of the project was to identify whether right whales make any short-term behavioural responses to the presence of low-frequency vessel noise. The population is not recovering despite the termination of whaling in the North Atlantic Ocean, and because these whales are experiencing considerable disturbance and harm from a number of sources, including pollution, disease, entanglement and collisions with vessels, identifying which factor(s) are having the most significant effect on their reproduction has been seen to be a key step in their conservation.
The aim of the study was to quantify the ambient noise levels of a
relatively undeveloped coastal bay in Florida, USA. An increasing level
of vessel activity due to both recreational and commercial coastal
developments is projected for the area, and underwater noise monitoring
was selected as a cost-efficient method for surveying the differences in
both natural and anthropogenic soundscapes throughout the area of
The study verified that this area is relatively undeveloped and the main sources of noise are biological. Certain locations within the site are much more biologically active, and efforts to identify development opportunities outside those areas became possible.
Set four miles South East of the city of Derby is Elvaston Castle
Country Park, a picturesque site featuring over 200 acres of woodlands,
parkland and formal gardens. At the heart of the estate lies Elvaston
Castle surrounded by famous Grade II* Listed gardens, and within those
gardens a Moorish Temple, much vandalised and in need of restoration.
With known bat roosts in the building, Baker Consultants was commissioned by Derbyshire County Council to undertake a survey and scope what was thought to be some simple mitigation work.
Charles Heaney, Derbyshire County Council project manager said: "Baker Consultants' approach to the project kept it to time and budget whilst ensuring that our legal obligations regarding protected species were met to the letter, vital for anyone and certainly for a local authority project."
Like many organisations with significant land-holdings Waste Recycling Group (WRG), one of the UK's largest waste management companies, has been exploring the potential of its sites to produce renewable energy. Since 2009 Baker Consultants has been providing WRG with the ecological consultancy needed to develop four potential wind farm sites located across the UK.
Referring to Andrew Baker's recent work at a public inquiry this summer, Stephen Tromans QC (39 Essex Street) said; "Andrew was extremely thorough and thoughtful in preparing his evidence for the inquiry, in anticipating the possibly contentious and difficult areas. He gave his evidence in a very clear and confident manner and dealt well with points raised in cross-examination."
The former Vesuvius industrial foundry site in Nottinghamshire, is a brown field site that is to be commercially re-developed by Commercial Estates Group (CEG). It consists of hard-standing, neutral rough grassland, a railway embankment, an old football pitch and two Local Wildlife Sites (LWS); Tranker's Wood and Tranker's Marsh.
Three species of reptiles are present on the site, with a significant population of slow worms present in the development foot-print that needed to be translocated to other areas of the site.
Baker Consultants was contracted to manage the translocation process and monitoring.
Ecology requirements relating to proposed wind farm developments have become increasingly complex in recent years.
Increasingly developers are required to define and take responsibility for species or habitats in the long term. This may be as the result of mitigation for species affected by a development, translocated out of an area to be developed or the remediation of sites damaged by past practice.