Visitors can learn more about the many species of bats hanging around DZG as we mark International Bat Appreciation Day.
A week today, volunteers from the Birmingham and Black Country Bat Group, known as Brumbats, will join us to talk to visitors about their work helping us monitor the bats found on our 40-acre site.
As well as Egyptian fruit and Seba’s short-tailed bats living in our Castle Creatures exhibit, we have a further nine species living wild in our off-show caverns and tunnels system.
These include the Lesser Horseshoe bat, which is one of the rarest native bats in the UK and is ranked as nationally important.
And our bat mascot, Lou the Bat, will be making a very unusual daytime appearance too at the information stand in the Castle Courtyard.
DZG Conservation Officer Chris Leeson, who has been carrying out the bat monitoring, said: “Our bat day is about appreciating bats, as they very often get overlooked because of their nocturnal lifestyle.
“Every single bat in this country is protected and we want to do all we can to help conserve them.
“We use specialist detecting equipment, including mist nests and harp traps, to catch the bats as they leave their roosts so we can define the species and monitor their health.”
DZG has recently been given permission to install sensitive and specialist equipment in the Stores Cavern, underneath the zoo grounds, to find out if bats are using the cavern to roost.