For help and advice call 0800 622 6828 Mon to Fri 8am to 6pm, Sat 10am to 2pm

Who We Are

Our Ecologists

Colin Hicks MCIEEM

Colin Hicks MCIEEM

Principal Ecologist

Our Principal Ecologist, Colin Hicks MCIEEM, has been a professional ecologist for more than 16 years working on a wide range of projects as Senior Ecologist, Consultant Ecologist, Chief Scientist, Program Marine Biologist and GIS manager here in the UK and overseas.

He has provided ecological surveys and advice to the renewable energy industry, housing developers, rail industry, national and local government, non-governmental organisations, landowners, householders and private individuals.

Colin is a full member of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) and is bound by their Professional Code of Conduct. He has experienced many challenges CIEEMrelating to ecology and development and takes personal pride in finding workable solutions.

He lives close to Cornwall/Devon border where he likes to cycle, surf and fish whenever work allows a bit of free time.

Martin Rule

Martin Rule

Principal Associate for ornithological surveys

Our Principal Associate for ornithological surveys is Martin Rule. Martin has been a professional ecologist for 25 years during which time he has worked for English Nature (now Natural England) and spent 13 years as a Biodiversity Officer with the Environment Agency. He has been a freelance ecologist for the last 8 years and works with us on a freelance basis.

His area of speciality is ornithology (eg breeding and wintering bird surveys, vantage point surveys for windfarm developments – done at least 5 major sites in last 8 years) but he is also experienced in surveys of otter, river habitats, barn owl, reptiles and phase one habitat.

His particular passion is helping people to pro-actively improve the wildlife value of their land through the production and implementation of site management plans, the creation of nature reserves and helping with guided walks. Martins previous experience in the creation and management of nature reserves allows us to facilitate off-site biodiversity compensation at sites where we cannot avoid or mitigate for significant impact.

He is also well connected with the local farming community and has successfully submitted over 40 Higher Level Stewardship applications since 2009, working for a wide range of private landowners and public bodies/charities.

Martin is a member of British Trust for Ornithology and Cornwall Wildlife Trust. Main hobby is tinkering in his 4 acre wetland nature reserve, as well as growing some veg.

Michael Sanders

Michael Sanders

Bat Ecologist

Michael has 9 years of experience carrying out environmental investigation work in the water industry and the Environment Agency, together with terrestrial ecology projects as a consultant ecologist, and most recently, working for Western Ecology. He has been developing expertise in bat surveys for the last 4 years and holds a WLM-A34 – Level 1 Class Licence to survey bats.

His background as an environmental scientist, and 12 years working in educational enhancement at Plymouth University and the Higher Education Academy, has led to work with universities around the UK, on the management and delivery of online educational resources focusing on subjects such as climate change and fieldwork.

Yolande Knight

Yolande Knight


Yolande Knight has worked in the areas of biology, geography and environmental science for 26 years.

She has a PhD in Plant Biology, and has worked as a post-doctoral researcher and lecturer in this discipline area.  She has also worked in educational enhancement at Plymouth University and the Higher Education Academy for 15 years, taking the lead in development of learning resources for higher education, such as fieldwork provision and education for sustainability.

She has worked with Western Ecology as a freelance surveyor for the last two years, developing a particular interest in native plant life and associated habitats.

She enjoys walking and swimming on the Cornish and Devon coast, and trying to grow edible vegetables on a very small plot.

We are always available for a chat so call now on 0800 622 6828 or 07730 880988 or email to request a fee proposal


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Registered Office: Brunel Court, 122 Fore Street, Saltash PL12 6JW

Trading address: 21 Lyndon Court, Pillmere, Saltash PL12 6XX


0800 622 6828

01752 849469


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