Four intrepid bat group members did the first of the season’s Kings Wood survey on the morning after the AGM.They walked off the cake by covering 11.7Km and got round all the boxes.
Two of them had bats, one had 6 soprano pipistrelles and one had a lone Brown long eared so people got a chance to practice their processing Thanks to Sara M for these photos
First off the ladder is got ready
Then the box is checked for bats
If bats are present the box is taken down from the tree and its contents gently decanted into a large plastic bag.
The bat is then processed. First it is weighted in a plastic CD case ( nless its a Brown long eared in which case a cloth bag is used)
Then the forearm length is measured
If it is a pipistrelle we check both wings to check their venation
We then peer at the bats genitals to check on gender. (Later in the season we will check on reproductive status).
All this information is recorded for later analysis
Finally the bat may be photographed
The bat is returned to the box. A cloth is stuffed into the box entrance to stop the bat flying off, returned to the tree and after about 15 minutes the stopper is removed
After Jim Mulholland’s talk on trees and bats, cavities in trees were peered at even ones very low down