High Speed 2 Railway Line

Department for Transport written question – answered on 16th May 2019.

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Photo of Dame Cheryl Gillan Dame Cheryl Gillan Conservative, Chesham and Amersham

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, which ecologists HS2 Ltd has employed to monitor tree and hedge netting along the route of High Speed Two; on what dates and at which locations nets were put in place; on what days and during which hours netted sites have been patrolled and checked by ecologists; and what wildlife has been caught in the nets and subsequently (a) perished or (b) been released.

Photo of Nusrat Ghani Nusrat Ghani Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport), Assistant Whip (HM Treasury)

HS2 Ltd has not directly employed ecologists to install, monitor or remove bird netting; HS2 Ltd contractors, Fusion JV, have employed the services of a sub-contractor for this work.

There have been deployments of bird netting in two areas on Phase One of HS2. In both areas no birds or other wildlife were trapped, injured or killed by the use of netting.

Netting was used by Western Power Distribution (WPD) near Silverstone in relation to utility works. The netting was installed on 4th and 5th February 2019 and was removed on 2nd April. WPD employed a suitably experienced ecologist for guidance to erect the netting and to carry out inspections of the netting. Inspections of the netted area were carried out on 12th, 14th, 20th, 22nd and 27th Feb and 1st, 5th, 7th, 14th, 15th, 18th, 20th, 21st, 26th and 29th March 2019. The inspections were carried out at differing times of the day and typically lasted 2 hours.

Secondly, netting was used by Fusion and National Grid near Quainton in relation to utility works. Hedge netting was installed on 6th March; the worksite was handed over from Fusion to National Grid on 4th April and National Grid confirmed they removed the netting on 15th April. Fusion employed a suitably experienced ecologist for guidance to erect and inspect the netting and National Grid employed a suitably experienced ecologist for monitoring and removal of the netting. Inspections of the netting were undertaken on the 7th, 15th, 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd, March and the 2nd and 4th April, and then every couple of days until the netting was removed on 15th April.

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