We are professionally qualified botanists with a very detailed, extensive and widely recognised knowledge and understanding of British vegetation. We have been working in this field since 1983 and are particularly experienced with the vegetation and flora of northern and western parts of Britain. We provide a range of services including surveys, monitoring projects, education and expert advice. The high quality of our work is recognised by many people and organisations including statutory conservation and land management agencies, conservation-related non-government organisations, and ecological consultancies.
Alison Averis BSc PhD worked as a member of the Nature Conservancy Council Upland Vegetation Survey team in the 1980s and her PhD was a study of the ecology of a community of oceanic liverworts in upland heaths in western Britain. Since the 1990s she has worked in a wider range of habitats in upland and lowland areas of Britain and has also studied vegetation in Ireland, Norway and the Faroe Islands. Alison is also in charge of membership and general administration of the Native Woodland Discussion Group.
Ben Averis BA MPhil worked mainly on woodland vegetation and woodland bryophyte (moss and liverwort) surveys in the 1980s and his MPhil was a study of bryophyte flora and ecology in over 400 woods in the Scottish Highlands and Islands. Since the 1990s he has worked in a very wide range of upland and lowland habitats in Britain and has also surveyed vegetation in Ireland, Norway, the Faroe Islands, France and Japan. Ben is also the newsletter editor for the Native Woodland Discussion Group and was a member of the Scottish Wildlife Trust Rahoy Hills Reserve Management Committee from 2001 to 2017.
We work as a self-employed partnership. We have Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurances, Construction Skills Certification Scheme cards and Emergency First Aid at Work certificates. We make risk assessments, emergency plans and lone-working procedures for fieldwork and have sustainability, quality assurance and data protection policies for our work generally.
Information on our publications is given under Publications (in menu at top).
Who we work for
Our clients are numerous and very varied (listed alphabetically within each group below):
Government agencies: Cairngorms National Park Authority, Environment Agency, Forestry and Land Scotland, Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Lake District National Park Authority Natural England, Natural Resources Wales, Scottish Environment Protection Agency and Scottish Natural Heritage.
Commercial(e.g. engineering design) companies and environmental consultancies: Aecom, Apem, Arup, Atkins, Bioscan, Brindley Associates, BSW Timber Ltd, Campbell of Doune, Carbon Trade Ltd, Direct Ecology, EnviroCentre, Etive Ecology, FPCR Environment & Design Ltd, GLM Ecology, Green Highland Renewables, Green Power, Halcrow/CH2M (now Jacobs), Heritage Environmental Ltd, Hydroplan, Land Use Consultants, MacArthur Green, MBEC, Natural Power, Renewable Power Consulting, RPS, Soil Engineering, Strath Caulaidh, Wallingford Hydrosolutions and WSP.
Conservation charities: Arkaig Forestry Co-operative Ltd, Carrifran Wildwood Project, John Muir Trust, Historic Scotland, Horoka Tomamu Montane Forest Biodiversity Conservation Project (in Japan), National Trust, National Trust for Scotland, Plantlife, Reforesting Scotland, RSPB, Scottish Wildlife Trust, Trees for Life, Woodland Trust and WWF UK.
Educational institutions and charities: Aigas Field Centre, Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management, Field Studies Council, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Scotland’s Rural College and The Wildlife Information Centre.
Rural estates: Atholl, Ben Alder, Drummond, Edinglassie, Glenfeshie, Kilfinichen and North Assynt.
Ben is also an artist (www.benaverisart.co.uk) and has done artwork for botanical/ecological publications including Into Morvern’s Woods (by Alasdair Firth, published by Morvern Community Woods, 2017), The Rainforests of Britain and Ireland by Clifton Bain (Sandstone Press, 2015) and the French botanical magazine La Garance Voyageuse (in 2015 and 2019).