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About Us


  • Qualified surveyors
  • Competitive pricing
  • Pragmatic solutions

Smart Ecology is an independent ecological consultancy based in Gloucestershire and Somerset.

Our experienced and professional ecologists provide a complete ecological service to enable our clients to achieve their objectives whilst meeting their ecological obligations. We work closely with our clients to provide fast, pragmatic and cost effective ecological solutions for all types of projects, from small scale barn conversions to large complex residential developments.

We have extensive experience of designing and implementing mitigation, compensation and enhancement strategies, obtaining protected species licences and consulting with local planning authorities and statutory agencies.

Our expert ecologists are fully qualified and licensed to undertake protected species surveys. They include members of CIEEM (Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management) and are bound by the Institute’s Code of Professional Conduct.

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The Team



Rachel Barber

Rachel Barber

Rachel has an MSc (Distinction) in Ecology and Management of the Natural Environment from Bristol University. Prior to founding Smart Ecology Rachel worked for a respected Gloucestershire ecology consultancy and has also worked for a large multidisciplinary consultancy. Rachel is a full member of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (MCIEEM). Rachel is an experienced ecologist specialised in European Protected Species (EPS). She holds survey licences for bats, hazel dormice and great crested newts.

Rachel has experience in a wide range of projects including barn conversions, small and large scale residential developments, quarries and renewable energy projects.

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Robert Dunn

Robert Dunn

Robert has a first class degree in Biological Sciences with Environmental Resources from the University of Warwick and an MSc in Environmental Biology from Swansea University. He worked in the private, public and charitable sectors before founding Smart Ecology and has extensive experience in protected species surveys and Preliminary Ecological Appraisals/Phase 1 Habitat surveys. Robert holds survey licences for bats, hazel dormice and great crested newts and is also an experienced botanist skilled in carrying out botanical surveys including National Vegetation Classification (NVC) assessments.

Robert has consulted extensively on a wide range of projects, including large complex developments, and is experienced at designing effective and pragmatic mitigation and providing inputs into masterplanning.

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Vikki Neville

Vikki Neville

Vikki has a BSc from the University of Exeter and a Masters by Research from Newcastle University in Animal Behaviour. She previously worked within the planning department of a local planning authority where she developed her understanding of the planning process.

Vikki has experience in botanical assessments, bat emergence surveys, bat transect activity surveys, and great crested newt and reptile presence/likely absence surveys. She also has particular expertise in data analysis and statistical modelling.