The Bat Conservation Trust has all bat ring numbers issued in the UK since 1970. All marking of bats is controlled by licensing through the relevant Statutory Nature Conservation Organisations e.g. Natural England, NatureScot, Natural Resources Wales, etc.). Only rings obtained through the Bat Conservation Trust (and before September 2012, the Mammal Society) are licensed.

Who to notify and what information is required

If you have found a ringed bat, please email with the following information:

  • Your name, address and contact number and also those details for anyone else involved e.g. if bat dropped at vets or a bat carer, their address and number.
  • Where the bat is. For example if it is alive and with a carer or vet, or if it is dead then please refrigerate or place in cool, safe place in case the researchers need it (do not freeze!).
  • The ring number, if you have it: ‘Lond. Zoo #####’ (most ring numbers begin with a letter followed by four numbers or five). Please do not handle a live bat to read the ring unless you are an experienced bat worker.
  • Photographs of the bat and the ring (this will help with identification). Please do not handle a live bat to take photographs unless you are an experienced bat worker.
  • Where and when bat found, and the circumstances.
  • If the bat is dead, BCT will contact the researcher who originally purchased the rings and ask whether they want the body sent to them. If they don't want the bat it should be submitted to the Animal & Plant Health Agency for rabies passive surveillance (if found in the UK).