Schwegler bat boxes are often attached to trees and buildings in order to mitigate against the loss of existing roosting sites. Artificial roosts are generally constructed using wood and woodcrete (a mixture of wood and concrete) and can be hung from the trunks of mature trees and building walls. To increase aesthetic appeal bat boxes can be integrated into building surfaces and in some cases are difficult to identify from the ground.
The Ecology Partnership was recently instructed to install bat boxes on surrounding woodland trees as part of a mitigation strategy issued as part of a Natural England licence. A variety of Schwegler bat boxes were erected on surrounding trees to accommodate the varying roosting requirements of the species identified within the initial surveys.
The choice of Schwegler bat box type
An abundance of brown long-eared bats were known to be utilising the site for roosting purposes. As was the case, the Schwegler 1FS and Schwegler 2FN bat boxes were positioned in the most optimal areas of the site, as they are considered a preferred artificial roost of choice by this species (Dodds & Bilston 2013).
Where to site a bat box
Gunnel et al. (2013) and Bilston (2014) research were followed when installing the bat boxes. The main points taken from these guidelines include:
- Bat boxes should ideally be placed between 3m-6m in height on a tree. However brown long-eared bats are also known to also roost below 3m.
- Bat boxes should be located approximately 20m apart across the site.
- The box aspect should be directed to the south or west and should roughly receive 6-10hours of direct sunlight a day.
- Access points in the boxes should be clear of any obstructions. However, suitable vegetated areas and flight lights should be in close proximity.
For more information about our mitigation surveys click here.
For further information on bat surveys click here.
Bilston, H. 2014. Maximising occupation of bat boxes in an ancient woodland in Buckinghamshire: A summary of recent research. BSG Ecology, Oxford.
Dodds, M. and Bilston H. 2013. A comparison of different bat box types by bat occupancy in deciduous woodland, Buckinghamshire, UK. Conservation Evidence. 10, pp. 24-28.
Gunnel, K., Grant, G., Williams, C. 2013. Landscape and urban design for bats and biodiversity. Bat Conservation Trust.