A message from Chris Packham
"Bats are an important indication of our landscape's health and intrinsically fascinating creatures. They need looking after and I would urge you to get to know your bats better! The Manx Bat Group are the best way to do this, so try to get involved in 2015."
Chris Packham, President of the Bat Conservation Trust, 9th April 2015
The Manx Batphone has been fairly quiet this summer but the first call in weeks on July 11th resulted in a young pip being returned to its roost early the next morning.
Exactly a year ago the householder called the Bat Group with a grounded bat in the house, which was not resolved successfully. This time a small bat was flying round the day room and placed in a box for the Bat Group to pick up. A visit that evening confirmed the roost but access was a bit difficult. At least two adult bats, however, were circling for up to half an hour, once or twice going to perch in nearby trees momentarily, evidently very interested in the young bat placed in a box on an adjacent flat roof.
The technique was repeated next morning but the 30 or so returning bats showed little or no interest this time, and so when they had all re-entered the roost, the youngster was placed at the entrance and crawled in by itself.
Robotic bat wing reveals flight secrets of bats
Howard Osborne has sent a link to a technology site where a University project is building robotic bat wing models in order to see exactly how they fly:
Volunteers needed for surveys
The Bat Group is regularly asked to conduct bat surveys of properties subject to planning proposals or where building work needs to be carried out. This involves a group of volunteers visiting the property at dusk to watch for bats, or during the day to inspect the property for visible evidence of bat use.
We are conducting surveys now and need volunteers. If you can help please contact Bob Moon. You don't need experience as full instruction on using the bat detector and participating in the survey will be given.
We would really appreciate your help.
Bats vs. moths
Recent research has revealed new insights into the battle between moths and bats and how some moths manage to avoid becoming prey. Read the news story on the BBC website.
New bat species in UK
Researchers have identified Myotis alcathoe or Alcathoe bat for the first time in the UK. The species is relatively new to science, being first identified in 2001. It is thought that Alcathoe bat has been in the UK for generations and has only recently been identified due to its similarity to two other native bat species: Whiskered and Brandt's bats. This new discovery takes the total number of bat species in the UK to 17, making up around a third of all mammal species.
Read the full news story at the Bat Conservation Trust website.
White nose syndrome
New guidelines for bat workers are available on white nose syndrome, a fungal infection that can affect bats. The draft resolution 6.7 Guidelines for the Prevention, Detection and Control of Lethal Fungal Infections in Bats can be viewed on the Eurobats website.
SEPTEMBER 2010: Advice regarding White Nose Syndrome has now been finalised. This should be of interest to all who are either undertaking licensed bat work or simply doing unlicensed surveys or find themselves on a site with hibernating bats and notice symptoms of interest.
The BCT has posted the guidelines at www.bats.org.uk/pages/info_for_batworkers.html.
The photos are particularly useful and there are procedures to be followed as best practice, which have resulted from discussions between the BCT and the statutory nature conservation organisations. Those who are licensed bat workers, in particular, should familiarise themselves with this.