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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: A review of the success of bat boxes in houses

Published source details

Bat Conservation Trust (2006) A review of the success of bat boxes in houses. Scottish Natural Heritage report.


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Create alternative bat roosts within developments Bat Conservation

A replicated, before-and-after study in 1991–2001 of nine buildings across Scotland, UK (Bat Conservation Trust 2006) found that five of nine roosting spaces installed within the roofs of the buildings were used by soprano pipistrelles Pipistrellus pygmaeus, but the number of bats declined at four of the five roosts. Of the nine bat boxes, four were not used by bats, four were used by bats in lower numbers than the original roost (original roost vs roosting space: 546 vs 455 bats; 769 vs 277 bats; 1,963 vs 1,174 bats; 3,500 vs 740 bats), and one was used by bats in greater numbers than the original roost (original roost: 280 bats; roosting space: 682 bats). Seven of the nine roosting spaces were designed for soprano pipistrelles. Two of the nine roosting spaces were designed for other bat species (common pipistrelles Pipistrellus pipistrellus and brown long-eared bats Plecotus auritus) and neither were used by bats. The roosting spaces were built into the roofs of residential buildings or offices to contain bats roosting within them. They were installed during renovations or to prevent conflict between roosting bats and human inhabitants. The size and design of the roosting spaces varied (see original report for details). Emergence counts and/or internal inspections were carried out 1–5 times/year over 1–10 years before construction and over 1–4 years after construction at each site between 1991 and 2001.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)