While out on the reserve in the evenings I have been lucky enough to see a great number of bats out hunting along the Clyde. Whether it’s Pipistrelles dogding in amongst the trees of the woodland, or Daubenton’s soaring a few centimetres above the river’s surface, I love to see these amazing animals at work!
Lately we have attempted to capture some footage of the bats living in Corra Castle, but so far we have not successfully filmed the Daubenton’s bats as they leave their roost in the evening. This is a perfect roosting spot for them: safe and sheltered during the day and right beside the river for hunting their insect prey. As well as the castle we have provided plenty of bat hibernaculums which can be spotted in some of the trees, looking a bit like concrete bird boxes. These are a perfect place for the bats to spend the cold winter months and means that they can gather in large numbers and share body heat in the shelter, improving their chances of making it into the spring.
Pipistrelle’s and Daubenton’s bats are the most common species to see flitting around the reserve on a summer evening, though Natterer’s and whiskered bats have also been picked up on the bat detecters so may well be hanging around the castle too. Of the 17 resident species of bat found in the UK, 9 are found north of the border. The number of species in Britain decreases the further north you go, with 3 species commonly found in the Highlands and only one species on the Orkney Isles.
Hopefully we may get some bat footage to share on the blog in the future!
Bye for now!
Alex Kekewich – Falls of Clyde Seasonal Ranger