Welcome to the Bernwood Forest Bechstein's Project Blog! Following the discovery of breeding Bechstein's in Buckinghamshire during a National Bat Conservation Trust survey, this subsequent project was conceived by Chris Damant, Jo Hodgkins and Toby Thorne to follow up and find out more. See below for updates on the blog and follow our Twitter feed @bechsteins.

All work is conducted under license from Natural England. All British Bats are protected by law.

The Bernwood Forest Bechstein's Project is a project of the North Bucks Bat Group.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Press Release

Having talked about the press release, we might as well post the whole thing here. It's fairly long, so click below to see it after the jump.

...and another one!

Our press release of yesterday is already out of date, with the first check of the traps on last night's survey revealing another Bechstein's!

The wood is in the core area of the survey but not one we had visited before, so this is a new dot on the map as well as another bat. Following the initial excitement we also caught several brown long eared bats, a Natterer's and a Whiskered bat - not a bad haul.

The latest Bechstein's

The weather followed the forecast almost perfectly and the rain only became significant at 1am as we were leaving. We also had time to play with our twitter feed, which we have set up so we can update it from the field. It appears on the top right of the blog page if you want to check it out.

All in, another good night - will we ever stop finding them?


Following the discovery of rare Bechstein's bats around the Bernwood area of Buckinghamshire as part of the Bat Conservation Trust Bechstein's project, a further study - The Bernwood Forest Bechstein's Project - has been set up by Jo Hodgkins, Chris Damant and Toby Thorne (who were all involved in the BCT study) in order to find out more.

We have been working hard for several months surveying woods in the surrounding area to get some idea of the spread of the population, as well as radio tracking to establish movements.

This effort has paid off with a remarkable degree of success, but this is not something we have been able to share widely; because of our commitment to the wishes of landowners - without whose considerable help we not have been able to do the project at all - and also the sensitivity of the information with two significant developments proposed in the area

However having written an interim report and sent out a press release on our findings so far the bat is now somewhat out of the bag. Given the interest that people have shown, and the significance of the bats, we wanted to have some means to share information and show how we're getting on - hence the creation of a blog and twitter feed for the project.

And here it is!

More information and updates to follow.