Want to research bats underground? Here’s some sources of information on where to look in your area; a perfect spring and summer activity to get prepped for swarming and hibernation seasons.
A word of caution: You need to be licenced to survey hibernation sites. You need to be competent and aware of dangers working underground. Cavers and Mine Explorers are sensitive to bat ‘issues’ so don’t go wading onto forums with requests for information of bats in caves and mines, a bit of diplomacy is called for.
A combination of the sites below should reveal sites you never realised were in your area. Why not approach the local caving group for a spot of joint working?
Yorkshire Dales Cave Maps: http://www.cavemaps.org/
UK Caving: http://ukcaving.com/board/index.php
AditNow – Mine exploration: http://www.aditnow.co.uk/
Mine Explorer: http://www.mine-explorer.co.uk/
28DaysLater Urban Exploration: http://www.28dayslater.co.uk/forums/
Approach your local Sites and Ancient Monuments records team for any records of Ice Houses, Lime Kilns, etc.
Everything but the kitchen sink
One of the additions for 2012’s bat survey gear I’ll be carrying is a Sony HD camcorder and tripod. Having used nightvision for surveying for a couple of years now I realised that a camcorder and IR lighting rig was a better way forward after seeing Pat Waring’s set up both in use and the resulting films he’s captured.
I’ll post a research blog showing my set up and some example films as soon as it warms enough for me to get out and do some filming.