What is Count Bat?
Count Bat is the sister app of the Mammal Society Ecobat tool but instead of providing context to your acoustic bat data, Count Bat works on bat counts recorded at roosts. Perhaps you’ve recorded 100 common pipistrelles at a roost. What does this mean? Is that a lot of common pipistrelles? Maybe it’s a small number? Put your recording into Count Bat and it will compare your number of bats to how many were recorded for that species across the country or closer to home. You can also select to only compare your roost to records in the same region, or that were recorded during the same time of year.
How does it work?
When a user uploads their roost count to Count Bat, their record is saved on the Count Bat database. The app uses this database to compare roost counts and assess whether your roost is larger or smaller compared to what’s already been uploaded. This data join a number of records from the National Bat Monitoring Programme. In this way, the more Count Bat is used, the better it becomes at assessing your roost count! The data uploaded will also be shared with the National Biodiversity Network and Biological Records Centre to help improve records of bats (but you can select whether you’d like your records to be shared or not – more on that below!).
Before using the app…
Before using the Count Bat App please read through the How to use the app section below the app or download the PDF here..
The report only works on one roost count at a time however if you have a large amount of data that you’d like to add to the app’s reference dataset it is much appreciated! You can use this proforma to fill in all your data. Then just email it to our Data & Information Officer, Charlie: email@example.com. She will be happy to add the data in for you and then you can use the app to create reports of any particular records.
The Save Option field will allow you to stop data you have already given us from being saved twice, simply select “I have uploaded this record before do NOT save to database.” This will prevent data replication.
Bat populations vary across the UK and so we are using the Met Office’s UK Climate Region and District maps to stratify records – named as Region and Country on the app. To check which region your site falls in, view the map here
By submitting this form you agree to the saving of your email address in the event the Ecobat team need to contact you. The Mammal Society transfers data to local or national record centres in order to improve understanding of British mammals. Data inputted into our website is transmitted to the National Biodiversity Network via the Biological Records Centre unless you have specifically indicated that you do not wish your data to be shared. For further details click here. You can also find a link to the Mammal Society GDPR page here.
Please scroll below the app for more information on each of the fields. We hope you enjoy using Count Bat but if you have any problems or questions, please do not hesitate to contact our Data & Information Officer Charlie: firstname.lastname@example.org
The app may take a moment to load. Click within the app before scrolling in order to continue to lower questions.
Fill in the fields outlined. Please note you must fill in all of the mandatory fields (marked with *) before generating a report. You can run more than one report of your data so you can have a look at different geographic and time filters and this is why the Save field is included. Please pay close attention to which option you are selecting to avoid data duplication. If you think you have uploaded the same data twice, please get in touch with our Data & Information Officer Charlie who will be able to help remove one one of the records for you.
Save: We’ve created the app so you can run your roost record through the app as many times as you like to test different geographic and time filters. However, we need to make sure that each record is only saved to the database once in order to prevent data duplication affecting the report outputs. That’s where the Save Options field comes in! Select whether your upload is new to be added to the database or has already been uploaded and so must NOT be saved again. Please take care to select the correct option when filling in the form. It will say at the start of your report which option you selected to remind you of what you have/haven’t already saved to the database.
Data Source: Where the data has come from for example, an organisation, a project such as the National Bat Monitoring Programme, a local group survey etc.
Latitude and Longitude: as specified in the app, please enter as DECIMAL DEGREES, for example the London Eye would be Lat: 51.503280 and Long: 0.11968732. You can convert your location at gridreferencefinder.com
Species: There is a dropdown list to select from. If you are unsure of the identity of the species you have observed, you can choose a group of species as follows: Myotis spp. (one of the Myotis bats); Nyctalus spp. (if it was a noctule or Leisler’s but you are unsure which); Nyctaloid (if it was either noctule, Leisler’s or serotine); Pipistrellus spp. (if it was one of the pipistrelle species); Plecotus spp. (if it was either a brown or a grey long-eared); or Rhinolophus spp (if it was a greater or a lesser horseshoe). Nyctaloid encompasses Nyctalus spp amd Eptesicus.
Sensitivity: If you select Public, you are saying that you are happy for us to pass your record on to the Biological Records Centre and National Biodiversity Network. Records will not be shared at resolutions lower than 2km due to the sensitivity of the species. If you select Do Not Publish your record will still be saved to the database in order to better inform future reports but it will be ‘locked’ and will not be passed on, nor will it be visible to anyone other than Mammal Society database managers and analysts. All bat records are treated as sensitive information and are only made publicly available at 2 km resolution.
When can your data be made public?: We appreciate that not all data can be shared straight away so here you can select how long you would like your records to remain unshared.
Options if you selected Public in the previous question: If you’re happy for your records to be sent to BRC and NBN straight away, you can select ‘now.’ Otherwise, you can select for them to be sent in 3, 6, 9, 12 or 18 months.
If you selected ‘Do not publish’ as your sensitivity then just choose “Do not publish.”
Data derived from the National Bat Monitoring Programme: these records will automatically be treated as ‘Do Not Publish’ because your data are also submitted to the Bat Conservation Trust and this avoids duplication of records.
Region: These are split to match the Met Office UK Climate Regions and a link to these regions is at the top of the page.
Email Address: Please provide a working email address. The only reason we need this is to help locate your data if you need us to e.g. remove a duplicated roost or for if a verifier needs to ask you about one of your records during the verification process.
Author Name and Site Name are not compulsory however they will appear at the top of your report. If you have not filled these fields in then they will remain blank.
Geographic Range: The default is: “No Limit.” If you set this to No Limit, your roost will be compared to all the data on that species in the database. If you select Region your roost will only be compared to roosts of that species in the same region as you. The same applies to the Country level. You can generate more than one report in order to test these filters out however you must make sure that you select the ‘do NOT save’ option for the Save field after the first time you upload your roost.
Time Range: The default is “No Limit.” If you select to use the time range filter, the roost will only be compared to roost recordings from the same time period as yours across all years held in the database. For example, if your roost recording was in May, then your roost will only be compared to recordings from the months April, May and June.
Optional Fields: have a mark next to them which states they are ‘optional.’ This is because they are not currently used in the reports. However please do complete these fields if you can because they will enable us to assess in future whether these features are associated with the size of bat colonies. If you cannot fill in the optional fields, just leave them blank/unknown if they have a dropdown. If inputting Cloud Cover please select the percentage that fits closest to your recording. Wind strength options are taken from the Beaufort scale.
Notes: Due to the open text nature, this field will not be included in reports but you may want to add in any information that would be useful to anyone who might look at your record in future. If you have no notes to make, please leave blank.
For any questions, contact Charlie on email@example.com
Mammal Society GDPR information can be found here: https://www.mammal.org.uk/data-protection/gdpr-information/