Important Covid-19 updates and requests for help – 30th July 2020

In this message we have lots of updates from the BCT, including important news on the effects of Covid-19, and a request from Imperial Uni for fresh bat droppings to help investigate the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in animal faeces.

Pete Guest Award – Please vote by 24th August

To recognise Dave Cottle’s VAST contribution to the bat group over the past 35 years we would like to remind all members that you can vote for him in the Pete Guest Award 2020.
You can vote by email, or post, details of how are in this document. But in summary to vote by email:

  • Please copy and paste the voting reference “PGA-Cottle” into the subject of a new email
  • Write your name and bat group only. in the main body of email
  • Email to: by 5.30 pm on Monday 24th August.

Clicking the email address above, should do most of the work for you 🙂

Latest Bat Group Bulletin

Click here to download the bulletin, included in this months edition:

  • Bookings for the 2020 National Bat Conference are now open.
  • We’re sure many of you would have seen and heard in the media about ‘Planning for People and Nature’, we have drafted a letter that you may like to download and send to the Prime Minister.
  • There’s also a call for fresh bat droppings (5), and ‘interesting’ bat records (16).

Bat Group Activities & COVID – 19July2020

The BCT has issued updated advice, as detailed below. The guidance we issued for SBG on 1st July is totally aligned with this, and hence remains in place. We will let you know when the advice is updated.

There continue to be some differences between the devolved administrations and it remains important that everyone follows the relevant Government guidance for the part of the British Islands in which they are based.
In response to recent questions from groups, especially relating to human-bat transmission of SARS-CoV-2, we have prepared this special edition bulletin about bat group activities and COVID-19:

Colin Morris

Cavers, Bats and Covid-19

Lisa Worledge, the Head of Conservation Services for the BCT has sent the group the following update on upcoming advice for Cavers, regarding bats and Covid-19.

“The IUCN Bat Steering Group are working on guidance for cavers at the moment. This should hopefully be published in the next week or so (and will be available from: when ready). This will include a document and infographic like the ones produced for bat researchers and bat rehabilitators but specifically aimed at the global caving community (additional guidance/infographics is being worked on for other relevant groups).
We’ll include information about this on our website and share it as widely as we can, including with our UK caving contacts such as the BCA.”

Lisa Worledge

30 Day Bat event online

Colin Morris wrote to tell the group about exciting plans for new online bat events:

“Following the success of the ‘Big Bat Skills Event – Online’ in May, and drawing on inspiration from other events that have transferred online, we are developing ideas for a virtual event taking place over 30 days starting from International Bat Night on Saturday 29 August. As part of this 30 days the National Bat Conference will still take place as a two day event consisting of talks, workshops and discussion panels online. 

As part of our 30 days of online events we would love as many bat groups to get involved at possible!

Let us know if you would be willing to host a ‘virtual’ bat walk

In true ‘SpringWatch’ style, BCT would love to host a ‘virtual’ bat walk on Sunday 30th August. This is a great opportunity for people who are not able to attend events in person or do not have a local bat group to still experience a bat walk. If you are willing to film yourself on a bat walk, have good wifi and someone to help with the camera work, we would love individuals and groups to film themselves and importantly the wonderful world of bat sound as part of a social media LIVE event. BCT can then ‘broadcast’ LIVE to your part of the country to allow our online attendees to experience the sounds of bats and depending on the situation, perhaps even see bats too!

We would love to have representation from all four nations as we see the sweeping of sunset move across the country. How many different bat species can we film in one evening? 

Please do get in touch with me if you would like to discuss this possibility further. We need YOU to make this idea a reality. Look forward to hearing from you.

Colin Morris