Brandt’s Bat – Myotis brandtii
Habitat: Coniferous, Mixed and Broadleaved Woodland, Grassland, Scrub
Description: Similar in appearance to the whiskered and Alcathoe bats. The most distinguishable characteristics in their dentition, and the male’s large bulbous penis.
Size: Largest of the three small Myotis species.
Origin & Distribution: Native. Recognised as a separate species from the whiskered bat in 1970 in the UK. Widespread throughout England, although absent from East Anglia and parts of the north-east coast. Most common in northern England and becomes rarer moving southwards. Maternity colonies have not been found in many southern counties. Found throughout Wales, and recently identified in Scotland. Absent from Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Diet: Broad dietary range feeding both on the wing (hawker) and from surfaces (gleaner) on flies, moths, and spiders.
General Ecology: Avoids urban areas, and frequently caught commuting along linear features. They have been found to forage up to 3.2km from the roost. They visit swarming sites in late August and early September and will commonly hibernate underground. Long-distance movements have not been recorded in the UK.
Breeding: Maternity roosts are in buildings, but also bat boxes, bridges, and trees.
Conservation Status: These bats are classified as data deficient on the IUCN Red List and future population trends are unknown.
Largest of three smallest Myotis bats. They are similar acoustically and morphologically to the whiskered and Alcathoe bats, and proper identification often requires DNA analysis to separate between these three species. However, the most distinguishable characteristics from these other two Myotis bats are a pointed forth tooth, and the male’s large bulbous penis.
Range: 32-103 kHz
Most energy: 51 kHz
Average duration: 4.2 ms
Often confused with other Myotis bats, particularly the whiskered bat (M. mystacinus) and Bechstein’s bat (M. bechsteinii), and occasionally, Nathusius’ pipistrelle (Pipistrellus nathusii).