ARSON HAS DESTROYED OUR BAT ROOST!
Arson has destroyed a vital bat roost at Powerstock Common nature reserve in Dorset which provides shelter for the endangered lesser horseshoe bat. It is a small consolation that if it weren’t for the wet weather we’ve recently had, the fire could have been worse for the wildlife on the reserve. The hut, which was at least 150 years old, was used by labourers on the now disused railway line which during WW1 was used to transport oak timber from the common. The embankment either side of the railway line has created a wonderful habitat for a variety of plants and butterflies and more recently the hut became a roost for endangered bats in summer.
We all have a responsibility to ensure that such an iconic species doesn't disappear.
The lesser horseshoe bat has severely declined, partly due to disturbance to their roosts and the loss of their foraging habitat. They like to forage in woodlands and through areas with varied habitats. Powerstock Common provides these ideal conditions. In 2015 we recorded whiskered bat for the first time at Powerstock Common. The more data we can record about bats on this nature reserve and others in Dorset, the better decisions we can make for the management of the sites.
Bats love to eat insects the way you love to eat chocolate bars. A single bat will eat 2,000 insects per night. Without them, some farmers might be spraying a lot more insecticides on your food. We hope if we can replace this hut and improve their habitat that, in time, the lesser horseshoe and other bat species will return and may use this hut as a bat maternity roost.
How we will use your donation:
We will ensure that every penny is spent wisely on practical solutions to support bats at Powerstock Common in their natural habitat.
Over the next year your donation will:
- help us improve habitats to provide a rich and diverse food supply of insects for bats.
- enable us to replace the hut to provide them with shelter and breeding opportunities for bats and other species.
We are extremely grateful for the level of interest we have received for this project before we've even hit the 'go live' button on our appeal, with one supporter donating a generous £1,000 which has now bought our online target down to £4,000. We are offering a variety of rewards to put you at the heart of this project. They range from a certificate, bat guides, to a bat walk, giving you the opportunity to spend time with our bat expert.
Thank you for providing our bats with a new home!
We'd like to thank Frank Greenaway/The Vincent Wildlife Trust for our bat photo, Neil Gibson for the picture of the fire and Paul Comer for the picture of the Gangers Hut .
If you would like to know more about the work of Dorset Wildlife Trust please visit our web page: www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk
If you have any questions about the project contact: firstname.lastname@example.org