By Participating in the:
BIG BAT NIGHT MAP
Date: Thursday 27 August 2020
Throughout the year, Bat Conservation runs bat walks and talks at dusk, giving people a unique and fun opportunity to get up close and personal with these incredible mammals and to learn more about them. However, this year, due to the Covid 19 restrictions, we are asking you to participate in a different way, by observing bats in your back garden, local area, local canal or river, local old buildings that bats love to roost in or
local parkland. We are then asking you to record your bat sightings on our online form, which you can find here: https://www.batconservationireland.org/in-your-area/sightings.
An important part of bat conservation is observing bat populations and whether there is an increase or decline in numbers. By helping us do this, you will be directly helping in conservation efforts of these wonderful mammals. When we have all the data in, we will be publishing the different bat sightings around the country and who knows, we might have
some really interesting sightings to share!
How to count bats?
Weather can be a big factor. If it is heavy rain or strong winds, the bats may decide that it is best to stay tucked in for the night, so you might as well too. So it would be good to let us know what the weather was like. Put this information into the comments section.
If you have a bat roost, start your count at sunset. Position yourself in the area where you know the bats emerge from the roost (bat droppings below the exit point or have seen them appear from this point previously) and count until there is no activity for a full ten minutes. If you have a bat detector, why not try to identify the bats (please check out the videos on our You Tube Channel for more guidance – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ck1WPpE8nJg).
Back Garden or Local habitat
If you are watching bats in your local area and if you don’t have a bat detector, let us know at what time the bats turn up and describe their flight pattern e.g. zipping around in circles (this is typical of pipistrelles) or flying high in the sky like swallows do during the daytime (this is typical of Leisler’s bats). If you are down by a river or lake – if the bat is flying close to the water surface, you may be watching Daubenton’s bats.
If you have a bat detector, see if you can identify the bats visiting your garden or local habitat. Don’t worry about trying to count the number of bats; often it is very difficult to accurately see how many are present because they are bee sipping back and forth, feeding along a hedgerow or treeline and often give the impression that there is a lot more that what is actually present.
Don’t forget to report in your results using our bat sightings form – https://www.batconservationireland.org/in-your-area/sightings.