Wildwood Ecology can undertake a bat survey of your building, bridge, structure, or tree to inform your plans or planning application, or survey your land (or proposed land purchase) as part of a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal. Detailed subsequent surveys to inform appropriate levels of mitigation or compensation for a development licence application can also be performed. All Wildwood Ecology consultant ecologists undertaking bat surveys are highly experienced and licensed bat workers in England and Wales.
For further information on our bat or other protected species surveys, call us on 029 2002 2320.
All British bat species are fully protected under the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 and the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). It is an offence to:
Roosts are protected even if no bats are present. If convicted of an offence the penalties can be severe, including a fine of up to £5000 (per bat!) and/or six months in prison.
Some bat species, including Barbastelle, Bechstein’s, brown long-eared, common pipistrelle (Wales only), greater horseshoe, lesser horseshoe, Noctule, and soprano pipistrelle, are also priority species under the UK Biodiversity Action Plan.
There are currently 17 species of bat breeding in the UK; some are common and present across the whole country, whilst others are extremely rare. All British bats are nocturnal and particularly active at dusk and dawn, feeding on insects – a single bat can eat up to 3000 mosquitoes in one night. They use echolocation to find their prey and navigate, and hibernate during the winter when food is in short supply.
Bats can be found in roosting in almost any building or structure – churches, castles, modern houses, trees, barns, caves, mines, bridges, culverts, and tunnels. Habitat features such as woodland, grassland, hedgerows, trees, ponds and rivers are important to them as foraging areas and linear features for use as flight lines.
Bats are very vulnerable to disturbance and there has been a major decline in bat populations over the past century, due to loss of roosting spaces, habitat loss, and reduction in prey availability.