Brown Long-eared Bat Plecotus auritus

A medium-sized bat, the Brown Long-eared Bat certainly lives up to its name! All British Bats are nocturnal, feeding on midges, moths and other flying insects which they find in the dark by using echolocation. Long-eared Bats roost in holes in trees and loft voids in old buildings, and feed in large gardens, along hedgerows, in parks and in woodland. They hibernate over winter, between November and April.


The Brown Long-eared Bat has greyish-brown fur and characteristically big ears. It shows a relatively slow, fluttery flight.


Length: 9cm Weight: 5-11g Wingspan: 25cm Average lifespan: can live up to 30 years


Protected in the UK under the Wildlife and Countryside Act, 1981, and classified as a Priority Species in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan.


Widespread throughout the country, but absent from some Scottish Islands.

When to see

April – October


The Brown Long-eared Bat is known as the ‘whispering bat’, because its voice is very quiet – no need to shout when you have such big ears! While at rest it tends to either curl its ears back or tuck them under its wings.

Common name

Brown Long-eared Bat

Species name

Plecotus auritus

When to see in Scotland

April – October

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