'sAll British bats and their roosts are legally protected by both UK and EU legislation.
This means you will be committing a criminal offence if you deliberately capture, injure or kill a bat; Intentionally or recklessly disturb a bat in its roost or deliberately disturb a group of bats; Damage or destroy a bat roosting place (even if bats are not occupying the roost at the time); Intentionally or recklessly obstruct access to a bat roost. Even shining a bright torch can disturb the bats.
Any remedial works to roofs, fascia and soffits can be undertaken outside the breeding season, during the winter months. However, seek professional advice before you undertake any works as anyone found committing bat crimes can face six months imprisonment and/or unlimited fines.
If you see bats around the area in which you live that is actually a good sign as bats are indicators of a healthy environment. Bats need places to roost, clean water to drink and lots of insects to eat, therefore seeing bats around suggests that your local area has lots of good habitat that will support a whole range of wildlife and they will also keep the insect numbers down.
At a bat roost last night we counted over 110 bats emerging from this one single roost. It is always pleasurable watching bats come out and hunt around in the garden catching insects. Why not invest in a Hetrodyne detector which you can use to actually hear the bat's echolocation calls. Get your children involved in counting the bats as they emerge from their roost and listening to them.
Your local bat groups will often arrange bat walks in the evening, so why not join them to learn more about these fascinating little creatures.
Further information about bats can be found at www.bats.org.uk.
Baby bat rescued and released back into the roost.