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Bats were on the wing on 13 nights during February with four species/species groups recorded. It was a mild and wet month with overnight frosts in South Derbyshire only on three nights towards the end of the month – all nights without any bat activity.
Over the five years of my study February is the winter month showing the greatest range of bat activity, from just three nights (10%) in 2020 to 18 nights (64%) in 2023.
On the 14th, after 10 days with little or no activity, a rise in temperature lured a common pipistrelle into the Valentine’s evening mood – after I’d watched it foraging for a short while just after sunset, he (it must have been a male) was social-calling in song-flight for over three hours! A second common pipistrelle, a soprano pipistrelle and the first Leisler’s bat of the winter were also recorded that evening. Four bats of three species – not what you might expect for a night in the middle of February.
Myotis bats appeared on three nights during the month – between one and three passes only, all probably whiskered/Brandt’s bat from the sonograms.
Alan Roe

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