How Can I Help Bats?

Be a bat ambassador!

Tell your friends how amazing bats are!

Susan Kerwin with bat hanging

The ecological services provided by bats

What many people do not realise is that these incredible animals play a vital and beneficial role in our environment. Our smallest species of bat, the Pipistrelle, can consume over 3,000 insects every night, keeping insect pest numbers in control.

Bats save the farming industry millions of euros on pesticides every year, which means less chemicals entering our food chain.

Among birds, bees, and other insects, bats around the world are also important pollinators for foods such as bananas, almonds, peaches, avocados, cashews, and other plants, including the agave plant of Mexico which is used to produce tequilla, so next time you drink some, you can thank bats!

Fruit-feeding bats also play a vital role in re-forestation through seed dispersal in their droppings.

These seeds drop to the ground in their own ready-made fertiliser, which helps them germinate and grow. Because bats help pollinate and disperse seeds, they can even play an important part in helping regrowth after forest clearance.

So let’s spread the word on the importance of bats and why we must protect them.

Water feature for bats

Water feature

Bats hunting

Bats hunting

Wildlife garden

Wildlife garden

How we can help bats in our gardens

Plant night scented flowers such as Jasmine and night scented stocks to encourage lots of insect life.

Leave wild spaces: allowing some overgrown areas in your garden creates a natural environment for many wildlife species and again encourages insect life.

Provide a pond or wet area: this is the perfect habitat in which insects such as midges and mosquitos, which are some of the favourite prey of bats, can breed.

You don’t have to have a garden to help wildlife. By planting flowers in a window box and leaving a shallow dish of water outside you will create an oasis for birds
and insects.

Putting up bat boxes: bat boxes are more likely to be used if they are located where bats are known to feed. Ideally, several boxes should be put up facing in different directions on sunny aspects to provide a range of warm conditions. Boxes should be put as high as possible to try and avoid predation from cats on the ground or nearby structures.

Wild Garden for bats
Kent bat box