We have another fascinating set of results from the Moor Bats monitoring project. The Anabat detector was placed in the garden of an isolated cottage on the moors near Axe Edge at an altitude of 444 metres, just to the south of Buxton, in August. This is another tetrad with no previous bat records and over the course of 8 nights we recorded 4 species. Most remarkably, on the second night a Nathusius’ pipistrelle spent 2 minutes in the garden. This is a scarce species in Derbyshire with less than 40 records so far. Common pipistrelle, noctule and a Myotis species were also detected.

As might be expected for an exposed location high on the moors, weather conditions appear to have influenced the amount of bat activity. There was no rainfall in the early evening on any of the survey nights and temperatures at sunset were between 9 and 15 degrees centigrade. Wind speeds varied significantly however and on evenings with stronger winds there was little or no bat activity.

Look out for an article about the Moor Bats project in the Autumn edition of ParkLife, the magazine of the Peak District National Park. It will be published next month and is free, available from visitor centres and tourist information centres throughout the Peak District. Here’s what David Chandler, Moors for the Future Partnership’s science programme manager had to say in the article - “Bats are a new area of research for us and it is adding to our understanding of moorland biodiversity”.

Alan Roe


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