Introduction to the guidance manual
22. Reporting




CSM Reports
Reports may be used for three purposes.
  • At the local level to help site managers assess their management and put the features on their sites in context with other sites which have that feature.
  • At the national level to review policy implementation and resource allocation, and
  • At the UK or international level to provide information for international reporting, and for broader policy review.
22.1 Timetable
Following a pilot year in 1998, implementation of Common Standards Monitoring commenced in April 1999. The first 6-year cycle will therefore be complete at the end of March 2005. Following this, JNCC plans to collate data together to assess the progress made, lessons learnt, and state of the site networks.
22.2 International reporting
It is expected that Common Standards Monitoring data will be used to help meet the UK's international reporting obligations. Common Standards Monitoring assessments are relevant to reports on the condition of habitats and species covered by the Habitats Directive, the Birds Directive, the Ramsar Convention and the UK BAP, using appropriate reporting categories. It is, therefore, important that the features which occur on each designation (e.g. cSAC, SPA, Ramsar) can be identified separately so that reports can be created on the features which occur on any one of the designations (e.g. all features on Ramsar sites).
The reporting cycles for the Conventions and Directives vary from 3-6 years, so it is likely that results will be aggregated from the most recent assessment made for each relevant feature on the appropriate sites. It is also likely that reports will need to be aggregated for individual features (e.g. for Habitats Directive Annex I habitats and Annex II species) in order to feed into assessments of their conservation status.
22.3 ASSI / SSSI reporting
Data derived from Common Standards Monitoring can be collated in various ways for reporting purposes. It is anticipated that the results of Common Standards Monitoring will be used to:
  • assess performance against national SSSI targets;
  • identify priorities for resource allocation or investment;
  • identify threats to feature or site integrity which require action at a site or policy level;
  • and review the effectiveness of site management practices.
It may also be necessary to aggregate information on features to produce site-based reports.
The reporting categories used for reporting on SSSIs and ASSIs at a UK level are listed in the table below.
For habitats, the reporting categories are Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) broad habitats. The relationship between BAP broad habitats and other habitat classifications is given in Jackson (2000). Individual country agencies may wish to report in more detail than these categories for their own purposes.

Habitat categories Species categories Earth science categories
Broad-leaved, mixed and yew woodland
Coniferous woodland
Boundary and linear features1
Arable and horticultural1
Improved grassland1
Neutral grassland
Calcareous grassland
Acid grassland
Dwarf shrub heath
Fen, marsh and swamp
Standing open water and canals
Rivers and streams
Montane habitats
Inland rock
Built up areas and gardens1
Supralittoral rock
Supralittoral sediment
Littoral rock
Littoral sediment
Inshore sublittoral rock
Inshore sublittoral sediment
Offshore shelf rock
Offshore shelf sediment
Continental shelf slope
Oceanic seas
Vascular plants
Non-vascular plants
Birds - aggregations of breeding birds
Birds - assemblages of breeding birds
Birds - aggregations of non-breeding birds
Other invertebrates
Structural and metamorphic geology
Igneous petrology
Quaternary geology and geomorphology

1These habitats are only rarely identified as interest features on statutory conservation sites; no monitoring guidance has been produced, and in the few cases where they are listed as interest features conservation objectives will be drawn up on a site-by-site basis.