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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Further evidence for the post-release survival of hand-reared, orphaned bats based on radio-tracking and ring-return data

Published source details

Kelly A., Goodwin S., Grogan A. & Mathews F. (2012) Further evidence for the post-release survival of hand-reared, orphaned bats based on radio-tracking and ring-return data. Animal Welfare, 21, 27-31


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

Rehabilitate injured/orphaned bats to maintain wild bat populations Bat Conservation

A study in 2006–2007 at a wildlife rehabilitation centre in the UK (Kelly et al. 2012) found that seven of 10 hand-reared pipistrelle bats survived for at least 4–10 days after release into the wild, and 13% of released ringed bats returned to bat boxes 38 days to 3.8 years after release. Seven bats (two common pipistrelles Pipistrellus pipistrellus, five soprano pipistrelles Pipistrellus pygmaeus) were radio-tracked for 4–10 days after release before the signal with their radio tags was lost. Three common pipistrelles were taken back into captivity after 1–4 nights after becoming trapped in buildings or unable to fly. Five of 39 (13%) ringed bats were found alive in bat boxes used for release 38 days to 3.8 years after release. All bats were admitted to the centre as juveniles and hand-reared using the same methods as (2). Before release, all bats flew freely in an outdoor flight cage. Thirty-nine bats were fitted with rings and released from bat boxes in 2006–2007. Bat boxes were checked daily for ringed bats in 2006–2007. Ten bats were fitted with radio tags and released from bat boxes in August and September 2007. Radio-tracking was carried out for 1–10 nights following release.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)