To conserve bats we need to establish the size of current bat populations, working out which bats are where and how they are responding to the threats and pressures they face.
BCT's network of volunteers and the general public monitor bats for national and international programmes. By monitoring bats we can discover the factors that are important for their survival. We can identfiy which species need action now, what areas are important for bats and what threats bats face. Ultimately our monitoring programmes give us, and governments, the information needed to make bat conservation work. Our monitoring projects span the UK, Europe and the globe:
National Bat Monitoring Programme (NBMP), monitors populations trends for 11 UK species of bats.
Bechstein's Bat Survey Project*, is the first attempt to establish the range and distribution of one of the UK's most elusive species.
iBats*, is developing national bat monitoring programs across the globe to help assess the impact of national development and global change.
Pan-European Monitoring at Underground Sites*, is proposed for bats subject to securing funding.
Welsh Agri-environment monitoring project* is looking at whether agri-environment schemes maintain or enhance biodiversity.
Monitoring bats doesn't just tell you about bats but also about the health of the environment. Bats are top predators often sitting at the top of the food chain and rely on many aspects of the landscapes from a healthy insect populations, to trees to roost in, hedgerows to commute along and good foraging sites. Bats are used as the UK government's biodiversity indicator species used for assesing the health of our environment.
*Currently inactive / No longer BCT projects