Putting UK woodland bats on the map

SummaryBat in flight at night

This project aims to develop and trial a national citizen science field survey scheme and species distribution modelling framework for UK woodland bats.

                                                 ©Hugh Clark, Bat Conservation Trust

Research objectives

We are working with the Bat Conservation Trust (BCT) to:

  • Develop a habitat suitability modelling framework for mapping British woodland bat species distributions and predicting the impact of land use and climate changes. 
  • Improve our understanding of the ecological and human factors driving woodland bat species distributions at local, regional and national scales.
  • Pilot an acoustic survey method for monitoring bats in woodlands with volunteers.
  • Inform and update guidance to those involved in woodland and forest management and creation.

Results so far

The 2017 field surveys are now complete and we are planning our next field season with volunteers. The first tranche of habitat suitability models are being developed using R coding software over the winter.


This is an ongoing project that started in December 2016. The initial project funding is assigned for two years.


Dr. Chloe Bellamy

Funders and partners

We are grateful for the many volunteers carrying out surveys and providing data for this project. We would also like to acknowledge the organisations loaning equipment and providing funding support:

  • Bat Conservation Trust
  • Ernest Kleinwort
  • Forest Enterprise England
  • J & JR Wilson
  • Margaret Joan Tottle Deceased Will Trust
  • Martin Wills Wildlife Maintenance Trust
  • Scottish Forestry Trust
  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • The Edith Murphy Foundation
  • The Late Miss Eileen Margaret Tyler's
  • Woodland Trust

What's of interest