Ecologist/Biodiversity Net Gain Specialist - Dorking
Our Dorking office is looking for an enthusiastic and experienced ecologist based in the South-east of England to join our team developing best practice ecological advice and taking a leading role in the development of Biodiversity Net Gain.
Are you an experienced seasonal or assistant ecologist looking for the next step up in your career? Are you looking to increase your exposure to complex and rewarding projects? Do you want to join an established consultancy practice that prides itself in offering a great place to work? Are you looking to take your engagement in the rapidly evolving policy around Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) to the next step? If so, we’d love to hear from you.
We encourage everyone at all levels to be fully involved so they can really make a difference, not just for FPCR, but importantly for you and your enjoyment in coming to work.
FPCR Environment and Design Ltd is one of the UK’s leading integrated design practices working extensively throughout the UK. Over the last 60 years the practice has developed a valuable mix of multi-disciplinary expertise in masterplanning, environmental assessment, urban design, landscape, ecology, architecture, arboriculture and green infrastructure. Working together, we have implemented many award-winning schemes in environmentally sensitive locations.
FPCR have been at the forefront of the development of BNG since 2012, and we are now looking to make appointments to strengthen this position. The team have recently been heavily involved in the development of the 2.0 and 3.0 metrics, lead a consortium to develop the small sites metric, and completed a contract to design and build the BNG GIS templates. We are currently looking to diversify further to take advantage of new opportunities that are emerging because of the evolving legislative and policy framework in the UK.
At the start of 2021 FPCR became an Employee-Owned business. Our people and culture are vital to the service we provide, and we feel this is the best way forward for the future of the practice. Employee Ownership will enable the whole team to share in the future growth and success of the business, whilst the practice can remain responsive, independent, and adaptable.
Our ecology team is led by three directors who each joined the company in junior positions and are committed to providing the same supportive and fostering environment that is at the heart of our practice. Our team of over 90 ecologists work out of four offices across the UK.
Could you be one of the experienced, talented and energetic professionals helping to continue the development of the team, responding to our clients and keeping FPCR moving forwards whilst responding to new challenges in ecological practice? The positions provide the right candidates with an ideal opportunity to be a part of a motivated team offering technical advice to a diverse range of clients covering projects across all aspects of ecology.
What will you be doing?
Initial broad work areas are outlined below:
- Undertaking habitat surveying fieldwork, including monitoring;
- Protected species surveys (our Ecologists are expected to complete no more than a two nights survey per week);
- Preparation of Preliminary Ecological Appraisals and Protected Species Reports;
- Assistance in the preparation of Ecological Impact Assessments (EcIA) and Habitats Regulations Assessments (HRA);
- Preparation of management plans and documents required to secure projects
- Land management advice and habitat restoration;
- Advising on habitat creation projects;
- Biodiversity net gain assessments, including use of biodiversity metrics and design and delivery of net gain solutions; and
- Associated consultancy services in support of the practices core business.
What we are looking for
As this is a hybrid role, there is a great degree of flexibility around what prior experience and skill we are looking for. Ultimately, we are looking for an enthusiastic and experienced ecologist that has a range of the following skills:
Core skills and experience:
- A good understanding of ecology and wildlife protection in the context of the UK planning system;
- Good experience in a particular field of ecology and a class licence for one or more protected species;
- Demonstrable experience in report writing, inclusive but not limited to Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA) reports, Protect Species Reports and Habitat Management Plans;
- Degree level or equivalent academic qualification in Ecology or related field;
- Membership of Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM), eligibility for membership or other similar is desirable;
- A level of competency in Microsoft Office Software and preferably (although not essential) some knowledge of GIS Package;
- Excellent Communication Skills; and
- A full, clean UK driving license and access to a vehicle.
Skills of interest include:
- Knowledge of BNG principles and processes and experience in the use of the 3.0 metric and condition assessments;
- Project management experience;
- Good knowledge of best practice survey techniques, relevant wildlife legislation and protected species licencing;
- Demonstrable Experienced in delivering a range of surveys for UK Bird species;
- A level 2 bat licence;
- BSBI FISC 4 or equivalent botanical expertise across a range of habitat types;
- Experience using UKHAB classification;
- MoRPh 5 Rivers and Streams training;
- GIS use (preferably QGIS or aptitude to learn);
What you can expect in return:
Salary: £20-26K dependant on experience
Our employees really are our greatest asset, representing a wide range of skills and experience from across the field of UK ecology. We are proud to offer our staff at all levels the opportunity to pursue their individual interests as this helps us to facilitate shared learning across our practice.
We are offering a competitive salary (dependent on experience and skills) with permanent staff having the opportunity for annual bonuses, enrolment on our pension scheme and 25 days holiday and a holiday purchase system. Everyone is enrolled in a BUPA health and wellbeing cashback scheme.
FPCR offers many workplace benefits, including activity and social events. FPCR is an equal opportunities employer. We offer opportunities for flexible working to allow you to fit work around other commitments such as carer and parental responsibilities. We are also happy to discuss opportunities for remote-working or hybrid remote-working/working from home.
If you feel you are the right candidate, or feel you can offer FPCR’s ecology team other relevant experience and skills, please submit your CV along with a covering letter, together with any supporting documentation that you feel may be of interest.