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Bat Group Bulletin No. 143

Bat Group Bulletin No. 143: 21 April 2017

  1. Book Now for the North of England Bat Conference!
  2. REMINDER Mitigation Case Studies Still Needed
  3. Bookings Open for the Wales Bat Conference
  4. Putting UK Bats on the Map
  5. UPDATE Wing Venation of Pipistrelle Species
  6. NBN Atlas is Live
  7. What registered charities can and can’t do as we head towards a general election
  8. Wildlife Acoustics Scientific Grant Programme Deadlines 2017
  9. International Bat Night 2017
  10. Bat Research Papers, Reports & Other Relevant Publications
  11. Key Dates for Your Diary

1. Book Now for the North of England Bat Conference!

There are still places available for the 2017 North of England Bat Conference, taking place on Saturday 6th May at Gateshead College, Gateshead. There are some great talks and workshops lined up for the day. The delegate rate is £35 for BCT members and £40 for non-members. For more information or to book your place, please see the North of England Bat Conference web page 

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2. REMINDER Mitigation Case Studies Still Needed

Thank you to everyone who has submitted mitigation case studies so far. As you may recall from last month’s bulletin, these are being requested for two projects: one being run by the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) in partnership with the University of Exeter, and the other by the Bat Conservation Trust aiming to fill the evidence gap around mitigation.

The success of these projects is strongly dependent on receiving mitigation case studies from ecologists and we still need more please! The details of the criteria and the questionnaire are online (case studies can also easily be shared by uploading reports).

This is an opportunity for free monitoring with no strings attached and it will be reported on anonymously. Participation is key to the success of this project, which is an important part of the future of bat conservation! Finding enough mitigation cases and getting access to sites are going to be our biggest challenges and we’d appreciate any help you can give us. If you have any questions about this project please email Jo Ferguson, BCT’s Built Environment Officer.

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3. Bookings Open for the Wales Bat Conference

We have opened for bookings for the 2017 Wales Bat Conference which takes place in Swansea on 3rd & 4th June with the Annual Bat Workers Forum on Friday 2nd June. The programme is almost finalised with talks on mitigation, horseshoe bats, monitoring, as well demonstrations of some new equipment from and Wildlife Acoustics and  Titley Scientific. There will also be the fieldwork on the Saturday evening. See the Wales Bat Conference web page for more information.

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4. Putting UK Bats on the Map

This is an exciting new collaborative project between BCT and Forest Research. The project will use habitat suitability modelling to uncover the ecological and human factors impacting on individual woodland bat species distributions, to predict current distributions of woodland bat species and aims to understand how distributions and assemblages of bat species may change in the future.

The project will also include field work elements this survey season and in 2018, to provide bat distribution data which can be used to ground truth the habitat suitability models and to build on work commissioned by Defra in 2014 to develop, test, critically assess and refine survey methods for systematic monitoring of bats in woodland. Four target areas have been identified for field work and Bat Groups in these areas have already been contacted to ask for their help over the coming season.

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5. UPDATE Wing Venation of Pipistrelle Species

Thank you to everyone who got in touch with Oliver Lindecke (a PhD student at Martin-Luther-University, Germany) following the request in the last bulletin about his study into the wing venation of pipistrelle bats.

One thing we forgot to include with the bulletin was the document Oliver had prepared setting out more information on his study, the wing venation patterns and how to record the information he needs for his research!

You can now find all of this on the news page of the BCT website (inc. Oliver’s document for you to download!).

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6. NBN Atlas is Live

The NBN Atlas went live on 1st April.  This is phase 1 of the project further enhancements will take place in the future. The NBN have developed some help pages to guide people through using the NBN Atlas and more information can be found on their website.

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7. What registered charities can and can’t do as we head towards a general election

Greenpeace was recently fined for being in breach of the Lobbying Act 2014 (see the Guardian website for more details). It’s important that all registered charities are aware of what the law allows them to do during the period leading up to a general election. Civil Society has recently published an article that summarises the situation, which is available to read on their website.

If your bat group is a registered charity then you might also be interested in the report published by the House of Lords select committee on charities: Stronger Charities for a Stronger Society. The report recognises the huge contribution the sector makes to Britain, but also that the world is changing rapidly and that there are many ways in which charities need to adapt.

It has 100 conclusions and 42 recommendations and further information is available at on the The National Council for Voluntary Organisations website.

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8. Wildlife Acoustics Scientific Grant Programme Deadlines 2017

Wildlife Acoustics has established a grant program to support bioacoustics research efforts. They have three funding rounds for the rest of this year: 15th May, 15th August and 15th November. More details about the grants and how to apply can be found on their website.

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9. International Bat Night 2017

This annual celebration of bats will be taking place over the weekend of 26th to 27th August. More details are on the BCT website

If you are organising a bat walk, talk or other event to join in the international celebrations, please do add it to the BCT events listings page

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10. Bat Research Papers, Reports & Other Relevant Publications

Please note we normally only include bat related articles, reports and blogs in this section where they are available to read online or to download without charge. Exceptionally we do include details of papers or other items where we think they will be of particular interest but where only abstracts or summary information is available, but we will include a note of that in the text about the article.  For more information about how to access journal papers see the BCT website

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11. Key Dates for Your Diary

Watch this space for dates and reminders of conferences and other events you may be interested in. Please don’t forget you can get some extra publicity for your events by adding the details to the BCT website:

BCT Events

  • 06 May – North of England Bat Conference. Bookings are now open for more information or to book your place the event web page
  • 02 June – Annual Bat Workers Forum. Details will be emailed separately about this event to all bat groups next week. In the meantime, if you have any questions please email Lisa Worledge.  
  • 02-04 June – Wales Bat Conference. For more information about this event and details of how to book see the Wales Bat Conference web page.
  • 01-03 September – Swarming Conference **SAVE THE DATE** Please email Naomi Webster to be notified when more information about this event is available and when bookings open.
  • 18 November – Scottish Bat Conference **SAVE THE DATE**

Other Events

  • 29 June-01 July – 2nd International Symposium on Infectious Diseases of Bats, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado. For more information see the event web page.
  • 01-05 August  – 14th European Bat Research Symposium, Donostia, Spain. For more details please see the event website.
  • 26-27 August – International Bat Night. For more information see the BCT website (please do share details of your events to mark this annual celebration of bats!)

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