Batman and Robin (and Cuckoo and Nightingale)

Yesterday at sunset, we found ourselves wandering around the local nature reserve, armed with torches, woolly hats and bat detectors.  We were attending the local Wildlife Trust's "an evening with bats".

But while it was still light, we had a classroom session to run us through an introduction to bats and to tell us some interesting bat facts (such as there are 18 different species living in the UK and some of them can live for over 20 years).  The smallest is the Pipistrelle which only weighs 4 - 7g, yet despite its tiny size, can eat up to 3,000 tiny insects on a good night! 

We also learnt that there are lots of misconceptions about bats.  For instance, they are clean and sociable animals, they don't intentionally dive bomb people's heads, they are not blind and they don't destroy buildings.

Before we went outside, we had a little peep at 3 little bats who had recently been rescued and are currently convalescing at the "bat hospital"

little bat patient just hanging around

Then we had a quick instruction session on how to use bat detectors before heading off into the nature reserve

The bats tend to come out just after sunset and it wasn't quite sunset, but we were kept entertained by the evening birdsong of a robin, a nightingale and a cuckoo singing a 3 part harmony - what a wonderful sound they made

A robin, a nightingale and a cuckoo were out there somewhere, singing away

At first, the bats were a little slow to appear but then we approached a large pond and the bat monitors started clicking like mad.  We stood at the water's edge and saw flashes of the bats as they flitted around in the moonlight, attracted by the small insects which were also drawn to the pond area.

We came away so impressed by these amazing little creatures - if you are interested in knowing more, then here are a couple of useful links:

 And what about batman?  Well yes, he was there too ....

Batman (aka Mr Cocopopia) - bat detector at the ready...


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