Certain species of animals and plants found in the wild in the UK are legally protected from being harmed or disturbed by a range of legislation. It is possible to get licences for certain activities that would otherwise be illegal and receive a range of advice on licensing and wildlife management from Natural England.
Searching for advice and licences has just got easier. You can now search for advice, licences and forms by individual species.
On this page:
(4 July 2014) Natural England is still experiencing significant shortfalls in our capacity to assess EPS licence applications, particularly those for great crested newts. We are aware of a number of outstanding cases and are taking steps to process these as quickly as we can. We are doing all we can to process new applications within our 30 working days target, regrettably however this may not always be possible. We will notify you if we cannot meet this timeframe.
We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience any delays may cause you. To help us please submit your applications as early as possible and read the relevent species guidance before you start.
Contact our Enquiries team on 0300 060 3900 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you need to track the progess of your application.
(1 July 2014) We have simplified the dormouse licensing process to help more dormouse licence applications receive a licence on the first submission. The process is explained in the annexed licence frequently asked questions: (292kb). The new method statement and work schedule templates are available for immediate use on our application forms page. Further information is available in the latest EPS newsletter: (287kb).
(5 June 2014) Natural England has issued an update for stakeholders: (171kb) on the 'improvements' for dormouse annexed licensing and the bat low impact class licence trial. For all previous issues see the EPS newsletter page.
(19 May 2014) Natural England has launched a new IT system to manage all customer details, applications and returns for protected species licensing. The Casework Management (CWM) system will provide customers with a number of new services and it will enable Natural England to improve the service that it provides to customers.
We are committed to providing a high quality service.
(1 July 2014) A new simpler licensing process, which comes into force on 1 July, will save developers and consultants time and money should they need to make minor amendment to dormouse licences.
(22 May 2014) Find out the truth behind our consultation proposals on changing the licensing arrangements for robin, starling and wagtail nests.
(28 March 2014) Natural England today welcomed the publication by Defra of a study which includes an evaluation of the use of environmental DNA (eDNA) to detect great crested newts in water.
(5 March 2014) Natural England and National Grid have agreed a responsible and proactive approach to the management and licensing of nesting birds.
(24 February 2014) Natural England is seeking views on proposed changes to the General and Class Licences, which are issued under wildlife legislation.