What we do

Two key, linked objectives of the group are to advance the protection and conservation of bats and their roosts and to educate the public about bats. To this end we offer presentations about bats to local groups and societies and lead bat walks for small groups and for organisations like the National Trust. If you would like to organise a presentation or a bat walk for your group, please email

We also attend a small number of events each year, with the objective of meeting members of the public who might not otherwise come to hear about bats.

A handful of our members are involved in the rescue and rehabilitation of grounded bats. While saving the life of a single bat may not add greatly to the welfare of wider populations, these cases often prove pivotal in winning hearts and minds of members of the public.

On occasion we receive funding in mitigation for activities which have adversely affected local bat populations. Recently we used such funds to buy bat boxes which we then supplied to communities in South Warwickshire.

Activities for members

In addition to our public-facing activities, we aim to organise events of interest to our members, and would be interested to hear members' ideas for additional activities. Examples of activities include

Bat box inspections

These are walks around a site where a number of bat boxes have been installed at a location such as Snitterfield Bushes Nature Reserve or Whichford Wood. The walks are led by a member of the group who is licensed to handle bats. The members of the group are asked to help carry ladders and other equipment (such as spare boxes). The licensed member(s) of the group go up the ladders to check each bat box to ascertain whether there is evidence that it has been (or is being) used by bats.

Surveys

BCT organises volunteers across the UK to survey a range of bat species. There are a number of sites in Warwickshire which have been monitored by members for several years and others which need monitors. Although you don’t need to be a member of the bat group to participate in a BCT survey, joining this group can provide you with training and mentoring. Details about the surveys can be found here https://www.bats.org.uk/our-work/national-bat-monitoring-programme/surveys

There are two lesser horseshoe bat roosts in Warwickshire and the number of bats using them is monitored by conducting emergence surveys on two evenings in July. Some members also monitor roosts of less rare bats and members of the public are encouraged to monitor roosts in their own properties.

Projects

We have conducted projects to look for Nathusius’s pipistrelles, barbastelle bats and serotines. The group has a set of static detectors as well as hand held detectors. We have our own harp trap which is used during some projects and may be borrowed by suitably licenced members for their own work.

Training

We offer training for members including detector skills workshops, roost visitor training and bat care training although we are unable to offer training to the level required for obtaining a survey/research licence.

Walks and Talks

The bat group responds to requests from organisations wishing to host bat walks. These involve an introductory talk about bats and bat detectors followed by a walk in the chosen area for around an hour. Members are encouraged to get experience in leading a bat walk and giving talks about bats. It’s important to ensure that a risk assessment is conducted first – by the requester if the walk is to be covered by their insurance or by the leader if the walk is to be covered by BCT’s insurance for bat groups.

From October to March we aim to organise talks about bats and their habitats which will be of interest to our members and the wider public, and would be interested to hear members' ideas for topics/speakers for future talks.

To see the current list of events, visit the what's on section.

Talks are generally held at The Kenilworth Senior Citizens' Club and your can view a map to find it here. (Yes, The Kenilworth Senior Citizens' Club is actually in the car park behind the shops!)