Habitat Data

The Greater London urban jungle may be famed as a built environment, but it also includes substantial areas of habitat that benefit wildlife and people. From swathes of grassland and woodland in parks and nature reserves to tiny mosaics of vegetation on derelict land, London is a complex patchwork of different habitats.

What habitat data do we hold?

Habitat Surveys

The most comprehensive surveys of London’s habitats to date were commissioned by the Greater London Council, London Ecology Unit and Greater London Authority in the 80s, 90s and 00s. We hold the resulting data set of habitat and open space survey information.

We also hold habitat data from our partners, from land owners and managers and from ecological consultants.

BAP Habitats

Working with London Biodiversity Partnership, we have developed modelled data on BAP habitats based on survey data and expert knowledge, including

  • BAP habitat condition, and,
  • BAP habitat suitability dataset which identifies areas of London that would give the best benefit to biodiversity if used to create any of nine BAP priority habitats in London.

Regional dot maps and spreadsheets are available to download.

GiGL partners can see full site information as part of their data exchange.

Private garden dataset (OS licence dependent)

This dataset isolates the Ordnance Survey Mastermap information for domestic gardens.

The gardens in the layer are all private domestic gardens. The dataset tells us the number, area and make-up of London’s private gardens.

The datset is very large and can be problematic to query. We are working on slim-lining the data so that it is easy to query and distribute to partners with MasterMap licences in the future. In the meantime, the garden dataset is a useful in-house GIS layer. We can estimate the number and area of private gardens in an area, compare this with our species dataset and map the full suite of potential wildlife habitats and green infrastructure.

This dataset was originally created by GiGL in partnership with London Wildlife Trust and the GLA as part of a research project. Read more about its creation here.

Extending our Habitat Data

Survey work in the capital is ongoing, commissioned by boroughs or by site managers. GiGL captures and stores this data as part of creating a more complete and up to date dataset. If you have habitat data, get in touch to discuss how we can help you manage and make the most of it.

As well as being one of the main users of records centres, consultants are potentially one of the main contributors of data.

Consultants’ survey data is of potential value to naturalists and conservation professionals, as well as to other consultants. Records centres are the central repository for biodiversity information. The more consultants submit their own records, the better the results of their own and other users’ future desk-top studies.