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Participate in BC Bat Count

Bat Count participants

The Kootenay Community Bat Project has developed a citizen science program to annually monitor roost sites. Abandoned houses, barns, church steeples – and even currently-occupied structures – can provide a summer home to female bats and their young. Monitoring these “maternity colonies” can give biologists a good idea of how bat populations in an area are doing from year to year. With the occurrence of White-nose Syndrome in North America, monitoring these colonies is more important than ever. Check this out:

We are asking Bat Count participants to conduct four bat counts per summer - two between June 1 and 30 (before pups can fly) and two more between July 21 and August 15 (when pups are flying and exiting the roost with their mothers). Making sure you do all four bat counts will allow us to best compare data from year to year and between sites. Let us know if you need help!

The bat counts are pretty simple:

  •  Arrive at your bat roost at sunset (bats will begin to emerge at dusk).
  •  The air temperature should be at least 12 deg (C) with low wind speed.
  • Sit or stand outside so that the bats' exit point is visible from a comfortable distance. More than one person might be needed if bats are exiting from multiple points.
  • Tally the bats as they fly out for their nightly insect-eating. We can provide you with a hand “clicker” to make counting easy. Record your observations on the data sheet (see download below).
  • Mail us your data sheet at the end of the summer.
  • Do not enter bat roosts or handle the animals.
  • Please respect private property. Ask permission if the bat roost is on someone else's land.

To download the Annual Bat Count instructions and data form, visit: 

http://www.bcbats.ca/index.php/get-involved/participate-in-the-bc-bat-count