Bat Survey Information

Montefiore Woodland Bat WalkFollowing a successful Moth Evening and Bat Walk in August 2013, the committee decided to purchase three Bat Detectors for the Woodland group so we could hold further summer Twilight Bat Walks to and from King George VI Park and around Montefiore Woodland itself. (The walks were held one evening at the end of each month – June at 9pm, July at 8:30pm and August at 8pm. It was agreed we would report any sightings to the Bat Conservation Trust as part of their national sunrise/sunset survey.

Once again, these walks have been popular and well-attended.

Blessed with ideal weather, much to the delight of everyone, we were all able to see and hear (via the Bat Detectors) between seven and twelve different Common Pipistrelles on the wing as they were hunting their insect prey in our local area. Bat calls are normally beyond the range of human hearing and are used to build up a sound picture of their surroundings thus enabling them to wing their way through the dark night hunting the tiniest of insects, but with the aid of the detectors we were all able to spot these delightful, mysterious, nocturnal creatures.

Bat Survey 2023

Friday 30th June – met at sunset 9:00pmUnfortunately, the rain began to fall just as Lisa and I arrived at the Woodland.
Two members of the Friends of Montefiore Woodland were already in the Clearing with their own Bat Detector scanning the adjacent area and Wildflower Meadow, but to no avail.
After waiting for several minutes to see whether or not we would be joined by any others….. and as the rain continued to fall, we decided to abandon the walk.
Lisa and I left, however, the two members decided to continue to scan the lower end of the woodland.

However, the next day, when looking at my mail, I found an email from the two members we left within in the woodland who reported, that despite the rain, they did detect and see one bat!

Friday 28th July – met 15 minute before sunset 8:30 pmThankfully the heavy showers of rain that fell during the day stopped and the skies cleared giving way to an ideal evening for looking for bats.
Lisa and I were joined by approximately 12 individuals of all ages!

During the winter, the committee had suggested we purchase an additional six bat detectors which means we are now able to have one detector between two people in a group of 30, which we strongly feels adds to the experience and hopefully, enjoyment !

This evening we saw one bat hunting for prey within the woodland, but the alleyways were quiet.
However, we enjoyed further sightings in King George VI Park. Finally spotting a total of 5 Common Pipistrelles and ended with a resounding “raspberry “ from one bat as it locked on to its prey!

Friday 25th August – met 20 minutes before sunset at 8pmThankfully, at this, our last stroll of the summer, we were blessed with a beautiful evening (especially as the previous one had been very wet!) There were in total 11 members of our local community in the Clearing (including several who had come back a second year) and once Sue had completed the introductory chat the sun was fast dropping. (For some reason the light level always appears to fall away much faster in August).
We waited for some time within the woodland but our detectors only picked up the one distant call of a bat in the vicinity. However, once strolling along the alleyway adjacent to the woodland some attendees spotted a single bat as it flew up over our heads a couple of times. Undeterred, we set off towards King George VI Park (down more alleyways) but again, no sightings.
Within the Park, our detectors alerted us to a couple more Pipistrelles, however, once we reached the Mulberry Tree near the Children’s Play Area our detectors were bombarded by numerous calls and everyone was thrilled to see a spectacular display given to us by, we believe, just 3 Common Pipistrelles!
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Bat Survey 2022

Friday 25th June – meet at sunset 9:10pm (if cloudy – 9 pm),Our June Twilight Bat Walk starts very late as a result of the long daylight hours, this usually reflected by low numbers of attendees and tonight was no exception with 3 members attending.

Weather was favourable and once the light level began to drop Common Pipistrelles was detected within the woodland.
Unfortunately, one of our Bat Boxes has been vandalised by with a Great Spotted Woodpecker of possibly a Parakeet. the tail of a roosting Blue-tit was seen in another.
The most activity was enjoyed along the tree line of King George VI Park with several bats flying very low above our heads!
In total 9 bats were sighted during our stroll.

Next walk: Friday 29th July – 8:30pm

Friday 29th July – meet at sunset 8:45pm (if cloudy – 8:30 pm),Lisa and I were surprised but pleased to be met by a large group (approx 30 people) of mixed ages in the clearing of the woodland. It was a beautiful clear evening and expectations were high in the hope we would see some bats. Owing to light level, the Pipistrelles were slow to emerge but our patience was rewarded! The children’s voices were delightful to hear as our bat detectors alerted us to the presence of the initial bat. As we left the woodland two bats had been seen. We then headed for the alleyways alongside gardens and King George VI Park and saw a further 5 Common Pipistrelles. A few visitors were able to detect the raspberry sound the bats appear to give while aerial hawking.
Some information would suggest bats follow the same pathway, however, on this occasion this was not so as in the past we have watched wonderful aerial displays within the park, but surprisingly none were heard or seen on this occasion. However the 30 visitors were not disappointed by this, as for the first time we received a round of applause at the end of the walk!
A donation tin for Kent Bat Group had been circulated and we are pleased to be able to forward them a cheque for £30. Many thanks to our visitors.
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Bat Survey 2021

Friday 25th June – meet at sunset 9:10pm (if cloudy – 9 pm),4 members attended our first Bat Walk since August 2019 as last year no walks were arranged owing to Covid restrictions.

Weather was favourable but Common Pipistrelles were late emerging as a result, the first detected about 20 minutes after sunset at 9:35pm 3 bats were seen in the Woodland and one inside a Bat Box.
In total 10 bats were sighted during our Twilight Stroll.

Next walk: Friday 30th July – 8:40pm

Friday 30th July – meet at sunset 8:40pm (if cloudy – 8:30 pm),Considering all day we had been battered by strong winds and showers from Storm Evert, it was great to be joined by ten people on this month’s Twilight Bat Stroll! The wind had dropped and we had only a slight sprinkling of rain at the start of our stroll but surprisingly only the one bat was seen within the Woodland and none along the Alleyways! Just as we feared we were going to be out of luck at the Park a couple more were detected and finally near the Children’s Play Park we were treated to an excellent aerial display by a further two bats which was a pleasing conclusion to our stroll!

Next walk: Friday 27th August – 7:45pm

Friday 27th August – meet at sunset 7:45pm (if cloudy – 7:30 pm)Thankfully this evening was fine, mild and dry and we were optimistic during our last walk for this summer, we would hear/see some bats on the wing. Initially within the woodland there was no bat activity and we checked the bat boxes and found just one had a roosting Blue-tit! However as the light level started to fall one solitary Common Pipistrelle emerged and started to aerial hawk. After a while we left the woodland and began checking the local alleyways on the way to the park. None were seen/heard initially but near to the park entrance we picked up another pipistrelle, but our best sightings of the evening were once again at the end of our walk not far from the children’s play area. The display the twelve of us enjoyed was definitely worth the wait! During our Twilight Stroll a total of 7 Common Pipistrelles had been heard/seen.
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Bat Survey 2020 Twilight Survey CANCELLED owing to COVID Lockdown

Bat Survey 2019

Twilight Survey 2019 Sightings
Friday 28th June, 2019 – 9:15pmA small number of Friends of Montefiore Woodland enjoyed this, our first Community Bat Stroll for 2019 in ideal conditions on a beautiful, calm, mild evening. We were not disappointed and by 9:40 we enjoyed good sightings of bats within the woodland. Three bat boxes were checked for occupancy, but these were empty this evening. Another Common Pipistrelle entertained us in the synagogue – woodland alleyway as it swooped above us. The alleyways towards the park had few bats this year, but others were seen within King George VI Park. In total 6 Common Pipistrelles were seen.

Next walk Friday 26th July – 8:30pm

Friday 26th July – 8:30pmLisa and I were joined by 10 visitors (including a couple of youngsters and their mum who had enjoyed a walk with us last year). Following the exceedingly hot days of this week and thunderstorm last night we had a beautiful evening for our stroll and once the light level had dropped were treated to an excellent show by 2 Common Pipistrelle that were aerial-hawking across the bramble and around the edges of the trees within the woodland. We must have heard 100 raspberries as they honed in on their prey within about 10 minutes!
Further sightings were heard and seen along the Alleyways and within King George VI Park. A total of 9 bats were counted and all in all a successful and enjoyable evening was had by all.

Our last Bat walk of the year plus the second opening of our Moth trap is on Friday 30th August, 2019.

Friday 30th Aug – 7:30pm


The opening of our Moth Trap kindly funded by Michelle Fenner from the Councillors Community Fund.

Once again August proved to be the most popular month for attendees to our Twilight Bat Walk and Moth Evening. We were joined by 16 visitors of all ages. Following a discussion on Bats and Moths (plus the viewing of some moth species trapped in Sue’s garden the night before) we were delighted the bat detectors picked up an active bat across the much favoured scrub of the lower woodland. Surprisingly we only witnessed the one bat and another along the public footpath adjoining the woodland. This lessening of sightings turned out to be reflected throughout our walk as in total we counted a minimum of 5 bats.
Once back from our stroll to check the Moth Trap it was pleasing to hear the bats continued to be active despite the pitch darkness!
A small donation was collected and will be forwarded to Kent Bat Group.
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Friday 29th June, 2018 – 9:15pmOn a cooler evening than of late, five visitors (and a Jewish gentleman who joined us in the Woodland) enjoyed our first walk of the summer. Owing to the light levels this month’s walk started at the later time of 9:15pm but it was still a further 15 minutes before the first bat sighting was spotted, but once again we experienced an exciting ariel display from 3 Common Pipistrelles across the lower area of the woodland.
On looking at the Bat Boxes we were delighted to discover three of our four boxes contained bats!
We then walked along the alleyways and into King George VI Park, witnessing several more displays along our route. Within the Park we believe we may have seen a larger bat, possibly a Long- Eared? Shirley (from Kent Bat Group) felt it is likely some reside in the area, but can be difficult to see as usually fly in the tree canopy. At the top of the park near Wickham Avenue several Common Pipistrelles were flying (we know their to be a roost site in this area).
We recorded a total number of Common Pipistrelles and 1 Long-eared – a satisfying evening.
Next walk Friday 27th July at 8:40pm.
Friday 31st August 2018 – 7:30pmJuly’s walk was cancelled owing to severe rain and thunderstorm after a very long hot, dry spell.

This evening was the complete opposite, dry calm and mild.
August is always a popular month for our Bat Walk falls into the summer holidays and as the nights draw in the evening walk can start at an earlier time. We were joined by a large group of mixed ages. We were all delighted within a few minutes of starting our stroll to see 3 Common Pipistrelle in the lower area of the Woodland and on inspecting the Bat Boxes found 2 were occupied by what appear to be roosting birds!
The stroll through the Alleyways to the park were unusually quiet, however, we had a good sighting of an active bat in King George VI Park and several like in June, close to Wickham Avenue. Along the alleyway on our return to Montefiore Woodland where they had been absent before, we saw several!
In total we counted a minimum of 8 bats and surprisingly as we opened our new Moth Trap the bats continued to be active, possibly they were aware the light was attracting more food!
A small donation was collected and will be forwarded to Kent Bat Group.

More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Bat Survey 2017

Friday 30th June, 2017 – 8:45pmEight visitors enjoyed the first of 2017 Bat Walks for the local community.
In hindsight we met a bit early at 8:45, especially as the cloudy conditions seemed to lift and the light levels failed to darken until a lot later! While waiting within the woodland we were joined by a fox who approached us with considerable courage on several occasions. We also discovered three of our bat boxes were occupied, one contained a bird, possibly a tit, but unsure of the other occupants as too high up within the box and our torches were not as strong enough for us to identify them.
We were just about to leave as we had had no bat sightings and it was now 9:45pm when suddenly the detectors alerted us to Common Pipistrelle presence. We were then treated to 6 excellent sightings most of which were within the clearing itself with the bats flying across the wildflower meadow.
We then walked along the alleyways and into King George VI Park, but only saw a further 3 sightings. The best show was definitely within the woodland on this occasion!
A very satisfying evening for all. Next walk Friday 28th July at 8:30pm.
Friday 28th July at 8:30pmRegrettably, our walk was cancelled as a result of inclement weather!
Friday 25th August, 2017 at 7:45pm
joined by
Shirley Thomson from Kent Bat Group who will lead our walk + talk.
A beautiful summer’s evening Bat Walk from Montefiore Woodland was enjoyed by at least forty visitors of all ages from young ones to wise ones! We were very grateful that Shirley Thomson from Kent Bat Group was able to join us and lead our walk and were thrilled she had brought along two furry little friends. A rare treat indeed, being able to see Common Pipistrelles at such close proximity. (These two young Pipistrelles are being cared for by Kent Bat Group with the intention of hopefully returning them to the wild). Once again Shirley gave us an interesting and informative talk about the bats in our local area and the work of Kent Bat Group. Our walk began at Montefiore Woodland at about 8:15pm and we were treated to two sightings within almost minutes! In fact it turned out to be one of the best walks we have experienced during the four years we have been organising these events and we enjoyed in excess of 15 sightings. Mainly, Common Pipistrelles although we are aware that Soprano Pipistrelle has been located within the vicinity of Cliffside Drive and Montefiore Bowls Club. Shirley feels strongly that Long-eared Bats are more than likely present within the canopies as well, but they are extremely difficult to see. This was a free event, however the donations collected during the evening £60 will be given to Kent Bat Group.
Our thanks to everyone who came along and made this a successful and enjoyable evening!
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Bat Survey 2016

Friday May 27th 2016
9pm 13C
Practice walk
Just Lisa and I were available for this initial walk. A cool, breezy evening. We decided to meet at the Clearing just before sunset at 9pm. We didn’t have to wait long before Lisa’s detector picked up 3 bats within the woodland. Sue stayed near the Bat boxes as we believe we have a roosting bat within one, although it didn’t emerge while we were there.

We were treated to some excellent sightings of 3 Common Pipistrelle in Montefiore Woodland and a further 6 sightings in King George VI Park and the public alleyway – again excellent views and the bats came quite close on occasions. We are also beginning to detect their feeding raspberry noise,too, which is pleasing.

Friday 24th June, 2016 9:15pmNine people from children to grandparents enjoyed the first of 2016 Bat Walks for the local community on an ideal, mild summer evening. 3 bats were seen active within Montefiore Woodland and we all thoroughly enjoyed the excellent sightings of aerial hawking along the public footpath adjacent to the woodland. The bats were flying low and fast and were very busy feeding as we all heard many raspberry noises! We continued our walk to and within King George VI Park where we saw a total of 7 bats.
A very satisfying evening for all. Next walk Friday 29th July.
Friday 29th July 6 Common Pipistrelle sightings on Friday’s Bat Walk from Montefiore Woodland. A reasonable number of visitors who were pleased to have good sightings.
Again, we believe a bat was inside one of our boxes
Friday 26th August, 2016 at 8pm
8 Common Pipistrelle sightings on Friday 26th August’s Bat Walk from Montefiore Woodland. A number of visitors of mixed ages were pleased to see bats, although viewings not as good as on some previous occasions.
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:

Bat Survey 2015

May 29th 2015
Practice walk
5 members of the Committee met in the Clearing at 8:30pm and after a very windy day and heavy showers we were surprised at the change of the weather as the evening although cool, was clear and pleasant. There was no bat activity until 9:10pm just after sunset (9:05pm)
As a result we will delay the start of our June Walk from 8:30pm to 9pm.

We were treated to some excellent sightings of 3 Common Pipistrelle in Montefiore Woodland and a further 5 sightings in King George VI Park – again excellent views and the bats came quite close on occasions.

Friday 26th June
Our June walk on Friday 26th from Montefiore Woodland CT11 8AE to King George VI Park went well. We joined by a couple of new people to our walks.

We saw 8 Common Pipistrelles and we believe we saw 2 bats of a different species….? They were noticeably larger, had a slower flight and were detected at 50MHZ.. As yet we are not completely sure as to what species they were, but hopefully we will see them another time?

Friday 31st July
A group of all ages (26) met in the Clearing of the Woodland in ideal conditions. Following a brief introductory talk, the group began the evening stroll and were delighted to see two sightings of Common Pipistrelle Bats within the Woodland. As before we made our way along the public footpaths with occasional sightings. However, the best was yet to come and we were treated to an excellent display of ariel hawking in King George VI Park to everyone’s delight.
In total we saw seven Common Pipistrelles.
Friday 28th August
Once again our group of 11 were able to enjoy the evening walk in ideal conditions. Several members had their first sighting of a Common Pipistrelle in the Woodland and then to great excitement Dave spotted what we believe to be a bat roosting in one of our bat boxes!
Another Pipistrelle was seen along the alley adjacent to the woodland and further sightings were seen in King George VI Park where once again we were treated to some aerial hawking to the delight of the children at a low level of a possibly larger bat..?
A total of 5 Common Pipistrelles were seen much to the satisfaction of all!
More information regarding Distribution of Sunset/Sunrise Survey sites can be found on the Bat Conservation Trust website:


Sunset/Sunrise Survey 2015

Information from the Bat Conservation Trust:
Based on the data received for 2015, around 111 volunteers took part in 98 Sunrise/Sunset Surveys. Bats were seen on 88 (90%) of these surveys. Even more excitingly, some volunteers actually managed to spot bats leaving or entering their roosts, and 7 roosts were found.

The distribution of sites surveyed, bats seen and roosts found is shown below. Note: If no bats were seen it does not necessarily imply that they are absent from the area.

Bat Survey 2014

May 30th 2014Practice walk – 7 Common Pipistrelle sightings from Montefiore Woodland to and in King George VI Park
Friday 27th JuneOur first Bat Walk for 2014 was well-attended with 24 people of all ages including children and we got a total of at least 5 sightings of Common Pipistrelle from between Montefiore Woodland and King George VI Park!
Saturday 30th July Another good evening with about 24 people. Best number of sightings yet- at least 10 (possibly 12 bats) along the whole route – 5 seen in woodland at once! Once it’s dark the number of sightings seem to diminish rapidly and the location of sightings seems to vary each time.
Friday 29th AugustFinal Bat Walk for this summer took place on another good evening with about 14 people including children – 9 sightings of bats along the whole route.