About / Hire / Contact me

Photo: NVC surveying in Northern Ireland.

email: coldavies2@hotmail.co.uk   

I'm a freelance ecologist, natural history writer, blogger, tour leader and associate lecturer based in North West England. I've been working in the ecology sector for nine years following a career change in 2011. During that period I have worked both full time for an ecology company in north Cheshire and freelance for various companies throughout the north west. I have written for the monthly journal British Birds, plus articles for various birdwatching magazines, and I have contributed species accounts for a number of books, including Atlas of the Breeding Birds of Lancashire and North Merseyside. I'm a full member of CIEEM

I’ve been an amateur naturalist for over 45 years, with a particular interest in birds, plants and habitats, but I also have a good knowledge of a range of other groups, including invertebrates, reptiles and amphibians. I’ve travelled all over the UK and Ireland and most of southern Europe in search of birds and plants, as well as large parts of Australia, New Zealand and USA. In 2012 I graduated from Edge Hill University with an MSc in Conservation Management and changed careers to become a professional ecologist.

If you would like to discuss ways in which I might be able to help with any of your projects please contact me on coldavies2@hotmail.co.uk

My professional experience includes the following:
Assessing the impact of new developments on wildlife (e.g. wind farms, solar farms and housing developments). This work includes:

Field surveys
  • Birds – expert in a wide variety of bird surveys (e.g. Vantage Point, Breeding Bird Surveys, winter transect surveys, species specific surveys e.g. marsh harrier, red-throated diver, nest searches, inter-tidal surveys, carcass searches). Upland Breeding Bird Surveys in the North Pennines as a  Field Ornithologist for the BTO.
  • Habitats - extended Phase 1 and National Vegetation Classification (NVC) surveys, particularly of upland areas throughout the UK and Ireland, including assesing the health of peat bogs and identifying potential Ground Water Dependent Terrestrial Ecosystems (GWDTE).
  • Invertebrates - surveys of terrestrial invertebrates of brownfield sites, including pitfall and bowl trapping and sweep netting. Unfortunately I no longer take on aquatic invertebrate surveys simply because I don't enjoy doing them. Saltmarsh invertebrate survey of RSPB Hesketh Out Marsh and Crossens Marsh on the Ribble Estuary on behalf of RSPB / Edge Hill University. Also butterfly and dragonfly surveys for Martin Mere Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT).
  • Protected species - bat transects, bat emergence surveys, great crested newt surveys (inc. eDNA), also reptile, badger, water vole and otter surveys. I have a level 1 GCN licence for both England and Wales.
  • Ecological Impact Assessment (EIA) report writing – including ecological appraisals, EIA ornithology chapters, technical appendices and habitat appraisals.
  • Data analysis – Collision Risk Modelling (CRM). Estimate the potential number of bird collisions likely to occur at a proposed wind farm. Bat data analysis using Kaleidoscope and AnaBat. Prior to changing career in 2011 I worked for many years as a database analyst.
  • GIS - Advanced user of MapInfo, which I have used to produce maps for EIA. This includes mapping flight lines, breeding bird data, extended Phase 1 habitat surveys and NVC surveys. Also experienced with ArcGIS.
  • Natural history writing -  Co-editor of the  "European Bird Report" in the monthly journal British Birds for two years. Several articles for various birdwatching magazines. An obsessive blogger for several years.
  • Lecturing - Associate lecturer of biology at Edge Hill university for three years. 

Identification skills
  • A keen birder for 45 years, capable of identifying most UK bird species on brief views or call / song.
  • A keen botanist for 45 years, with a particular interest in mountain flora and peat bogs. Good at identifying grasses and sedges and with a good working knowledge of identifying bryophytes, especially sphagnums.
  • A keen entomologist, with 45 years experience observing dragonflies and butterflies, 12 years experience of regular moth trapping and an expert at identifying saltmarsh and freshwater invertebrates, including beetles, mayflies, stoneflies, caddis flies and spiders.
  • A keen herpetologist for 25 years.

Intertidal Vantage Point survey.

Great crested newt relocation.

Surveying for water voles.

Bat surveys.

Saltmarsh invertabrate pitfall trapping at Crossens marsh on the Ribble estuary.

Surveying golden plover prey items in Southern Scotland.

Leading the way with Edge Hill University students on a freshwater ecology field trip to North Wales!

Gearing up for another season!

My Photo View Colin Davies's profile on LinkedIn    
email: coldavies2@hotmail.co.uk

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