James Shipman: The Village Goes Batty

July 2020

Over the last two weeks I have had the privilege of running two social distance bat walks for a few members of Great Shefford. 

One was in beautiful weather and the other was in terrible weather. However both were extremely successful and hopefully after Covid-19 I will be able to run a walk for many to join! 

During these walks we were treated to a spectacular display of moonlit dancing with the bats as our entertainment. From a solitary Pipistrelle by the school, to a large Noctule bat flying through the play park, from a Daubentons bat bouncing over the river to an acrobatic collaboration of pipistrelles by the church. The diverse range of species in such a small village is a delight, but not unexpected. 

Some further exploration of species is needed in the village but it is likely there is at least 6 species present in Great Shefford. 

Over two walks of spectacular success we have been blessed to see how many species are as well as could be present. This is far from strange as the variety of habitats and roosts present for different species of bats allows this to be perfectly normal. The range of prey for the bats also makes it normal to have such a great index of species. 

So in short, Great Shefford is lucky to have such a fine group of species to add to its diverse range of flora and fauna and hopefully over the next couple of months and years we can establish how many species of bats are present in our village that we call home (as well as the bats). I will be keeping you all updated with when the walks are, what has been seen and a further insight into the type of bats there are in the village.

Happy to answer any questions anyone has!

James Shipman

Pipistrelle
Noctule
Daubeton

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