Saturday 15 February 2020
Neil Middleton publish milestone book
The new book
"Is that a bat?" describes sounds we can detect on an ultrasonic
detector. That is, all sounds, except those from the bats themselves. There is
still a lot of lack in
knowledge about the bats'
focused on the animals' search
and commuting calls.
This has been the case
since the 1980's.
But, for example, the animals' social sounds have
been ignored. This could be
males marking territories, or animals arguing in the air.
Social bat calls
first highlighted as late as 2014,
when Neil Middleton published his
book on this topic.
So far, Middleton is alone on
publishing such a book.
Neil Middleton has made
another step. He has
now included all sounds, except bats, in his new book. This is of course very
useful, since almost as often we come across sounds we cannot identify.
Amphibians, birds, grasshoppers and small rodents can all emit ultrasound on a
regular basis. Several of these sounds are species specific. In addition, a
number of mechanical sounds
may find its way to the detector.
All of this can cause confusion when we
try to identify our recorded sounds.
So the knowledge Middleton conveys in his latest book is absolutely useful to
any bat scientist.
The book is for anyone who works actively with bat sounds, and is strongly
recommended. It should be a permanent
of any library dealing with bats.
The book was published in January, and NIFF was sent a copy by the author
this week. NIFF has been mentioned several times, including from the Askim
workshop in 2018. More on this comes in the book review which will be included
in the next
issue of Fennoscandian Bats.
Saturday 8 February 2020
to see hibernating bats at Mønsted Limestone Mines
the late 1990s Mønsted started
guided tours to see hibernating bats
They offered people tours on both Saturday and Sunday during both winter holiday
weekends. These tours were very popular and 50-150
However, winter is a vulnerable time for bats
since they are in hibernation.
significantly reduce the bats'
survival, and thus
such activity has generally
been taboo. Most
serious researchers have rejected
such activity. It was therefore controversial when Mønsted started with
guided tours during
only a limited part of the mines are
visited, and where
relatively few bats have been found, many
been critical to this practice.
for winter tours, this inspired other
less serious companies to start guiding as well.
studies from both Mønsted
and Thingbæk show that, despite human winter visits, the number of
increased over the years.
limestone mines have two daily tours of the mines during the entire Danish
Over 18.000 bats hibernate in the mines at Mønsted in Danmark. Foto: Leif
Friday 31 January 2020
European Bat Detector Workshop to be organized in Finland 2020
The European Bat Detector Workshop was first organized in
the Netherlands during 1991. Since, this workshop has been organized in
connection to the European Bat Research Symposium (either just before, or
after). This year the 15th European Bat Research Symposium will be organized in
Turku during 3-7 August (check our meeting calender at
So it is the pleasure of
the Nordic Chiroptera Information Center (NIFF) to invite you to the 11th
European Bat Detector Workshop, which will be organized in Kausala, 133 km
east of Helsinki.
The five day (four night) workshop will include
peer-reviewed oral presentations, posters, workshops, and sessions for
exchanging experience in field practices.
The aim of the
workshop is to get field training in practical bat work, especially the use of
various models of both passive and active bat detectors. This will improve our
training and knowledge of the latest technology and experience on field
identification of flying bats. The mixture of novice and well experienced bat
workers (and everything between) enhances the learning process by self awareness
For more information check our web site
An Anabat passive detector with weather box.
Friday 29 November 2019
New «handbook» include all the
bats in the world
Volume 9 of the Handbook of Mammals of the World is the latest issue
a book series containing
in the world.
volume addresses all the
species on our planet.
Each species is covered with text, maps, illustrations
and references. According to Lynx publisher, the
information should be updated, but NIFF has information that a lot of key
Still, the book is the most comprehensive work on our bats
NIFF has received a copy
in the next issue of Gudnjoloddi and Fennsocandian Bats.
Thursday 31 October 2019
Bird species of the Eurasian steppes will reveal the origin of
the Party-colored Bat
The geographic origin
of the Party-colored Bat (Vespertilio discolor) has so far been unclear.
It has always been presumed that they originated from the steppe regions of
South-eastern Europe, north of the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. Furthermore,
it was presumed they foraged in grassland during summer, followed by mating
activity and hibernation in mountain areas containing cliffs.
A new literature study has as objective to review
bird species with similar ecological and habitat requirements as the
Parti-colored Bat. This study might shead some light to the mystery that has
followed this species since the 1800's.
The study is being carried out by Leif Gjerde
31 July 2019
Wildlife Acoustics discontinues
the SongMeter 3
The USA based
manufacturer Wildlife Acoustics recently announced that from July 2019
their second generation of passive detectors, the SongMeter 3, will be out of
production. The SongMeter 3 was originally launched in May 2014 as a new
generation of the perfect detector. It was developed based on the experiences
from the SM2 detector. However, the SM3 was considerably more expensive and a
lot heavier. The size and weight made it impractical for field use. The SM3
lasted only five years.
Tuesday 25 June
number of hibernating
bats in Swedish mines due to climate change?
1980 to 2017, hibernating
bats were montored
at three abandoned mines in
Taberg and Kleva mines each have around 1.5 km of accessible
passages. Here, a maximum of 517 (Taberg) and 132 (Kleva)
bats are recorded, divided
Ädelfors is a small mine with only a maximum of 22 individuals.
The number has been constant for
the Daubenton Bats
and Nathusius' Bat
have increased greatly in numbers.
shown a significant but weak decline.
trend for the same species has also been demonstrated in continental Europe and
the British Isles. This indicates that there is a common
cause for the changes in species populations.
are bold enough to suggest that there are climate changes that
cause the changes, without any
evidence of this.
Jens Rydell, Johan Eklöf, Hans Fransson, and Sabine Lind. 2018. Long-Term
Increase in Hibernating Bats in Swedish Mines — Effect of Global Warming?
Acta Chiropterologica 20 (2), 421-426. ISSN
Daubentons Bat inside Romsåsen mines. Photo: Leif Yngve Gjerde.
6th International Berlin Bat
Meeting to be organized in March 2020
The Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research is organizing
the 6th International Berlin Bat Meeting during 23-25 March 2020.
With this conference, Christian C. Voigt and
Tanja Straka would like to foster an exchange of ideas related to «human
perspectives on bats». Registration will open early summer. For more information
and updates check their web page
Pictures from previous
meetings may be viewed
Christian C. Voigt during the meeting in 2015. Photo: Leif
New bat detector: Titley
Scientific launches the Anabat Scout
two large manufacturers seem to go separate ways in regards to developing new
While the USA
based firm Wildlife Acoustics are discontinuing their production of active
detectors for field use, the Australian firm Titley Scientific have chosen to
launch yet another active detector for fieldwork. Three years ago they launched
«the Walkabout». And this November a new detector was
announced, ― the Anabat Scout.
The Anabat Scout is a simpler model
compared to the Walkabout, but also at a lower cost. It records in full
spectrum, and include heterodyne, auto-heterodyne and frequency division. A
built in GPS enables to use it for transects, since the recordings and GPS are
both time-stamped. An interesting feature is the inclusion of a bat counter.
Sounds of emerging and returning bats can be time stamped by two separate
buttons. This is a useful tool when counting emerging bats at colonies. Titley
Scientific have been creative when developing this detector, making them the
first manufacturer with this feature on a detector.