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Protected Species

Bridges can have bat roosts built in, canal banks can provide the perfect habitat for water voles, and vegetation and trees lining the canal offer suitable breeding environments for birds and waterfowl.

Certain UK species are listed in Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981). This means that it is an “illegal offence to intentionally kill, injure or take any wild animal listed on Schedule 5 and prohibits interference with places used for shelter or protection, or intentionally disturbing animals occupying such places” unless under specified circumstances.

Read guidance on protected Species European and National Legislation.

The following species are protected by either UK or EU law or both:

  • Bats  – In the UK there are 18 species of bat making up a ¼ of all mammal species that inhabit our isles. Every single one of these bats are protected by law and you can find almost all of them using the waterways network for one reason or another.
  • Badgers
  • Birds
  • Great Crested Newts
  • Otters
  • Reptiles
  • Water Voles
  • White Clawed Crayfish

What is the legislation in the UK, find out more here.

More Protected Species