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Rare bat species found at Whitlingham Country Park

PUBLISHED: 17:34 07 December 2017 | UPDATED: 17:34 07 December 2017

A Nathusius Pipistrelle, property of the Bat Conservation Trust. Photo: Daniel Hargreaves

A Nathusius Pipistrelle, property of the Bat Conservation Trust. Photo: Daniel Hargreaves

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A species of rare bat has been discovered at Whitlingham Country Park.

The bats, called Nathusius’s pipistrelles, are one of the most important species in the area, despite being little-known to the public.

Throughout the summer, Norwich Bat Group caught the bats at eight locations in the Broads National Park, and other areas of north Norfolk.

Conservationists spent 32 sessions trapping, weighing, measuring, and marking the bats with unique numbers. They found a total of 52, with 13 found at Whitlingham.

The discovery highlights the importance of the Broads to wildlife diversity, as although it only covers 0.1pc of the country, it is home to more than a quarter of the UK’s rarest wildlife.

Andrea Kelly, Broads Authority senior ecologist, said: “The Broads Authority have funded and supported this vital project and we hope it will lead to the bats being better understood and better protected in the future.”

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