Annex

London Bat Audit

Species

UK Status

London Status

Notes

Greater horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus ferrumequinum

Endangered

BAP Priority

Extinct

Last Greater London record from Oxleas Wood in 1953.


Lesser horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus hipposideros

Endangered

BAP Priority

Extinct

Last Greater London record from Abbey Wood (Woolwich) in 1952-3.


Whiskered bat

Myotis mystacinus

Vulnerable

Rare


Due to difficulty in separation, these are considered together. Occur rarely and in low numbers in outer London Boroughs such as Hillingdon, Richmond, Bexley and Bromley. One current known (winter) roost only.

Brandt's bat

Myotis brandtii

Vulnerable

Rare


Natterer's bat

Myotis nattereri

Vulnerable

Scarce

Still relatively few records in Greater London. Most central locations are Highgate Wood and Hampstead Heath, otherwise Richmond and Hounslow and occasionally other outer London Boroughs. 8 current known roosts (mostly winter).


Daubenton's bat

Myotis daubentoni

Not Threatened

Locally frequent but declining

Relatively widespread and strongly associated with ponds, lakes & rivers. Occasional summer roosts have been found in trees on Wimbledon Common and in Ruislip Woods. Contrary to the national trend, this species is apparently declining in London and its sensitivity to increasing ambient light levels is a possible reason. 4 current known winter roosts.


Serotine

Eptesicus serotinus

Vulnerable

Rare; has declined

Serotines are found in outer London Boroughs, especially Bromley, Havering, Sutton and Richmond. 2 current known summer roosts, in Bromley and Teddington.


Noctule

Nyctalus noctula

Vulnerable; declining

BAP Priority

Widespread but declining

The status of this large, wide-ranging bat is difficult to assess, but the past two decades have seen a rapid decline in the species and this mirrors the national trend. An exclusively tree-roosting bat; current known roosts number <10 London-wide.


Leisler's bat

Nyctalus leisleri

Vulnerable

Scarce

Leisler's bat has been recorded infrequently in London area, yet sightings have doubled in the last three years. New foraging sites for the species include the Barnes area, Wandsworth Common and Brent Reservoir. 3 current known roosts (Haringey, Bromley and Bexley).


Common pipistrelle

Pipistrellus pipistrellus


Not Threatened

Common

A widespread species, the common pipistrelle is believed to occur in all London boroughs. Roosts are still discovered relatively infrequently, however.


Soprano pipistrelle


Pipistrellus pygmaeus

BAP Priority

Common

Also widespread and probably London’s commonest bat. Apparently more associated with wetland habitats than its close relative, P. pipistrellus. Known roosts currently number 15-25?, but many more pass undetected.


Nathusius's pipistrelle

Pipistrellus nathusii

Rare

Rare

Only recently confirmed as a UK breeding species. Detector records from an increasing list of sites include Lesnes Abbey Woods, Chislehurst Ponds and the Wetland Centre at Barnes. 1 known current roost site in bat boxes in Hounslow.

Brown long-eared bat

Plecotus auritus

Declining

BAP Priority

Scarce

Brown long-eared bats are fairly secretive and may be under-recorded in Greater London, although reasons for the national decline are also likely to affect London’s population. Roosts have been found in Bexley, Bromley, Hillingdon, Wandsworth, Kensington & Chelsea, Barnet, and Richmond.


Data Limitations

This audit is based on data from the London Bat Project collected in the mid-1980s, as well as that collected since by the London Bat Group and is therefore not systematic. This audit is the best possible understanding of the status of bats in London that can currently be realised by the London Bat Group.

In general, every borough will have bats present, as even in the inner boroughs there are usually some areas of suitable habitat that can provide feeding habitat for small numbers of at least the soprano and common pipistrelles. In general, the outer boroughs with larger areas of more suitable habitat should be expected to have higher numbers of bats and a greater diversity of species.