But a bat is just a bat, isn’t it?
Well, it’s not that simple, unfortunately. There are 17 different species of bats in the UK, and 10 (possibly more) of them have been found in Northumberland.
All bats are protected by law and it is illegal to capture or handle them without a licence. Many bats like living with humans, as our buildings provide an alternative roost site to old, dead trees and our gardens provide excellent habitat for them to feed in.
Our bats all eat insects so are carnivores, thats why they have teeth like dogs..... nice set of teeth in the photograoh to the left. This is a common pipistrelle.
What can I do to help bats?
Click here to find out how to make your garden better for bats. Our bats are varied and live in different habitats, eating different things. They even fly in different styles.
Have a browse though the species and see what you can see on a warm summer.
Bats sleep or roost during the day and hibernate during the winter when the insects that they eat aren't around. Depending on the species of bat, as they do have preferences, bats will roost in caves, buildings, trees, brick walls, cliffs etc. In practice it is unusual for roosts to be made up of a mix of species, but if they are, we were always told that the two species would keep themselves to themselves in the roost!
However our current research is starting to show evidence that some species might share living quarters a bit more closely...
Just goes to show, there is still lots to learn about our UK bats and on a greater scale, world wide bats.