I’ve recently been on an Advanced Bat Roost Survey course, which was brilliant, and has resulted in yet another shift in my vision. I recently blogged about how more time in the wild changes your relationship with the plants and animals around you – familiarity shifting your landscape vision. I love it on the rare occasions that this shift happens in noticeable increments (as it is usually a slow, organic, cumulative process). The course really opened my eyes to the different types of Potential Roosting Features (PRFs), and in the times I’ve been in woodlands since attending, I’m noticing PRFs much more – they seem to stand out – a batty version of Eagle Vision in Assassin’s Creed. (I am currently half way through Black Flag, waiting for Syndicate to be on sale!)
So I took my new superpower and called up my mate Vicky (who did the course earlier this year and is also in possession of PRF-Vision!) and we spent a couple of hours in Merrions Wood with our new endoscopes looking for bats!
*at this point I should warn you that if you go on a course like this, it’s very likely that you’ll end up spending a lot of money on kit. I have now bought a new endoscope and a new ladder to feed my PRF addiction.
Using endoscopes to search for bats in trees is, it should be said, a LICENSABLE activity – if you attempt to do this without at least a Class 2 Bat Survey licence from Natural England (Vicky and I both have Class 4 Licences), you are breaking the law, so don’t run out and start endoscoping trees – if you fancy getting into this type of survey work, get involved with your local bat group!
Anyhow, so how did we do??? We found a bat! We must have endoscoped 50 PRFs, but we finally found a Brown Long Eared bat holed up in a PRF in a small beech tree. Here’s the video!
So this, needless to say, has just stoked my addiction and I hope to record lots more bats in PRFs. Will keep you posted!