A recent review of radiation effects data highlighted that information on the effects of low-dose, chronic exposure was, at best, fragmentary. These data are required to define the dose effect relationships, which must underpin assessments of the impact of ionising radiation on biota. In response, four Good Practice Guides (GPGs) have been produced as part of a protocol development framework that aims to harmonise experimental approaches, with a view to ensuring that appropriate endpoint data are collected and reliable dose effect relationships determined. The GPGs cover test species selection, endpoint selection, radiation exposure and experimental design considerations. A key guides researchers through the GPGs and the decisions made are recorded on a pro-forma, which is the basis of the experimental protocol. This paper describes the first application of the framework to a radiation effects study. The framework has been adopted by the UK Environment Agency as a document upon which future Agency-funded experimental work in this field will be based. It is hoped that the framework will gain acceptance in the wider scientific community and enable knowledge gaps to be addressed, in order that successful protection of non-human biota can be demonstrated.