There are seventeen species of bat in the UK, six of which are known to use bat boxes, and they often live in close proximity to humans, using gardens as an important source of food, water and shelter. However, populations have declined significantly during the past century as many natural roosting and feeding sites have been destroyed.
You can help to support these small, intriguing creatures by providing a roosting site. Because they need different roosting conditions at different times of the year, bats will often move around on a regular basis to suit their needs.
The ‘Maternity Box’ is an extra large bat roost box that has 4 chambers to encourage breeding.
For best results, site your bat box:
- In a sturdy tree or building where bats have been seen or are known to feed.
- As high as possible (at least 2-5m), with a clear ‘flight-path’ for access.
- In a sheltered area, ideally south or southwest facing to ensure a few hours of sun.
- Near a wet area, such as a pond or marshy environment which will attract the insects favoured by bats and also provides somewhere for them to drink.
It can take a while for bats to take up residence in a new bat box. As a general rule if it hasn’t been used after three years, try relocating.