The White-Clawed crayfish is listed on Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Surveys for white-clawed crayfish populations typically involve the use of baited traps, manual searches (for live crayfish and field signs of crayfish) and after-dark torch-light surveys. In practice the survey methodology employed will be dictated by local conditions, notably water depth and clarity. A survey licence is required and further licenses must be obtained for the use of traps.




When is a Crayfish Survey Required?

Survey Info

Survey reports and mitigation plans are required for development projects that could affect White-Clawed Crayfish, as part of getting planning permission or a mitigation licence. Surveys need to show whether protected species are present in the area or nearby, and how they use the site. Mitigation plans show how a project will avoid, reduce or manage any negative effects to protected species.

Local planning authorities should use this advice to decide what is needed for surveys and planning mitigation measures to protect White-Clawed Crayfish.


Why Choose Ellendale Environmental?

Ellendale Environmental ecologists are experienced in planning and undertaking crayfish surveys and are fully licensed to do so. Our ecologists are able to provide practical advice and support to our clients ensuring that the surveys are suitable for planning. We are able to develop practical mitigation solutions tailored to each site.

Your development will be in safe hands with our experts at Ellendale Environmental who will work alongside you to ensure that your development is compliant with the law which will minimise disruption to your project. We are able to ensure this through extensive searches of the surrounding area being conducted for the presence of crayfish. If crayfish are present we work collectively to ensure the development process is not hindered whilst protecting the species through implementing appropriate mitigation and compensation measures



White-Clawed Crayfish - Find Out More

The White-Clawed Crayfish Austropotamobius pallipes is Britain’s only native freshwater crayfish. It is readily identified by its whitish underside, and has a brown or olive body with a pitted appearance on the upper surface of its claws. Once a widespread and common species in English and Welsh rivers, the White-Clawed Crayfish has suffered severe population decline throughout much of its natural range.

The White-Clawed crayfish is listed on Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. The act makes it illegal to either:

  • Take White-Clawed crayfish from the wild or,

  • To sell White-Clawed crayfish without a licence from the appropriate nature conservancy agency.

The White-Clawed Crayfish is also included in the IUCN Red Data List, Appendix III of the Bern Convention, and Annexes II and V of the European Habitats Directive. The Habitats Directive requires member states to designate protected areas as Special Areas of Conservation (SAC’s) for species in Annex II.