What is a Specialist Assessment?
A bat specialist assessment can happen at various levels – desktop, brief scoping/ screening or detailed. A detailed assessment will require desktop research, fieldwork (the length of time and season of survey will be dependent on the type of impact or the objective of the study), data analysis and report writing. Refer to the South African Good Practice Guidelines for Surveying Bats at Wind Energy Facility Developments - Pre-construction. Edition 4.1 (Sowler et al, 2017) for some examples of bat field sampling techniques.
A bat specialist is someone who has at least 5 years’ experience in bat scientific research, bat field assessments or bat conservation and/or husbandry efforts. For the purposes of bat specialist assessments conducted for EIAs under the NEMA, bat specialists should also be registered by the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions as a Zoological Scientist.