Six ecologists from BSG Ecology joined Dr Ian Davidson-Watts on Tuesday 22 September for a training event that also contributed to a (Natural England licenced) long-term monitoring project at a protected hibernation and swarming site in Wiltshire.
Greater horseshoe bat Rhinolophus ferrumequinum, lesser horseshoe bat R. hipposideros, Daubenton’s Myotis daubentonii, Natterer’s M. natteri and Bechstein’s bats M. bechsteinii were captured in mist nets, with one of the Bechstein’s bats fitted with a radio tracker before release. Mist nets were monitored using one of our thermal imaging cameras, thus reducing the disturbance to bat activity in the form of artificial light.
The training event helped to further the technical understanding and experience of ecologists from our Oxford and Monmouth offices. In addition to gaining a greater familiarity with rare species such as Bechstein’s bat, it was an opportunity to enhance handling skills, appreciate some of the more subtle characteristics of different bat species and get up to date experience with mist netting.
The welfare of captured bats was a key consideration and was one of many topics discussed during the event.
Thanks are due to Dr Ian Davidson Watts for his preparation and professionalism in delivering the training.
This video and others can be found on the BSG Youtube channel
Top photograph: Bechstein’s bat taken by Principal Ecologist Matt Hobbs