Lesser horseshoe bat maternity roost: thermal imaging camera footage of emergence

Lesser horseshoe bat maternity roost: thermal imaging camera footage of emergence

The footage below shows lesser horseshoe bats Rhinolophus hipposideros emerging from a stone shed that supports a maternity roost. It was captured in early August 2019 by BSG Ecology’s Guy Miller and Hannah Daniels, using one of BSG Ecology’s FLIR T650sc thermal imaging cameras. The location is near Abergavenny, Monmouthshire.

This shed in which the roost is located is on a hillside surrounded by scrub and open woodland. The bats started to emerge early, the first leaving the roost ten minutes after sunset and the majority following within twenty minutes. It was a perfect night for filming the emergence; warm, dry and with lots of insect activity.

The bats can be seen “light sampling” in a sheltered low doorway before leaving the roost to forage, the thermal camera footage allows a very accurate count to be made. In the latter part of the second film up to eight bats can be seen hanging on the rafters at the edge of the roofs after emerging, while others forage in the vegetation around the building.

Thermal imaging footage allows behavior and numbers of bats using roosts to be accurately recorded, which can be advantageous for both development and conservation-led projects, as this footage illustrates. For thermal imaging support, or to discuss its applicability to your project, please contact one of our offices.

 

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