Falkirk Wheel 4 Track Recorder Bandit pipistrelle Copyright H Clark, Bat Conservation Trust Survey Team Lins Mill Aqueduct
Title "BATS & The Millennium Link"


Bats are the only mammals capable of
true flight. They are
warm blooded and suckle their young.

Falkirk Wheel

British Waterways website opens in new window

Scottish Natural Heritage website opens in new window

Falkirk Environment Trust website opens in new window


The study of bats and their use of habitat along and adjacent to the
Union and Forth & Clyde Canal network in Scotland

Project Timespan: 2000 – 2007

The BaTML project has now ceased its activities. The project was live during the period 2000 to 2007 and this website has been kept online for the time being so that anyone interested in the project outputs can have access.

The BaTML Project Team would like to thank all supporters, funders and volunteers for their commitment, enthusiasm and hard work.

The final proceeds remaining with BaTML upon its closure were donated to The Bat Conservation Trust's, Scottish Bat Project.

BATS & The Millennium Link (BaTML) was launched in late 2000 with a view to monitoring the bat populations along and adjacent to the Forth & Clyde and Union Canal network that connects the east coast of Scotland with the west coast. These canals, after heavy investment, were in the process of undergoing major changes during a period when they had been completely re-opened to water traffic. From an environmental point of view these changes were by no means all negative. Many positive things are happening which we are sure will benefit the local wildlife and bats in particular. As such our canals should continue to remain very valuable wildlife corridors.

The project, which commenced in 2000, was set up primarily to study the following species of bat:

Myotis daubentonii - Daubenton’s Bat
Pipistrellus pygmaeus - Soprano pipistrelle
Pipistrellus pipistrellus - Bandit (or Common) pipistrelle

Project Goals

The following were put in place as the main objectives of BaTML:

  • Establish benchmark data regarding bat activity and monitor trends thereafter.

  • Gather information regarding diet, behaviour and use of habitat.

  • Produce distribution maps for the 3 species of bat being studied.

  • Locate, monitor and protect bat roosts found in the study area.

  • Contribute towards Local Biodiversity Action Planning.

  • Raise public awareness of bat related issues and improve the image of bats generally.

To help us in achieving these objectives we also got involved with Habitat Assessment, Insect Studies, Training, Public Walks/Talks and wider Public Relations activity. Note that BaTML was a non-profit making organisation and the money generated through our activities was used directly for the benefit of our research and/or bat conservation generally.

Laura Black and Chris Gould - Union Canal 2002

Laura Black and Chris Gould
Union Canal 2002

BaTML Performance
Last updated 24.11.2006

In order to monitor our successes the following are measured regularly:

Number of research days completed.


Number of new bat roosts discovered.


Number of volunteers involved to date.


Number of people attending public events/courses.


Newsletter Distribution.


Funders and Supporters

All of our results were achieved in conjunction with a network of enthusiastic volunteers without whom we would have struggled to come anywhere close to our goals. We would like to thank everyone involved for their support.

We are greatly appreciative of the funding obtained from British Waterways, Falkirk Environment Trust and Scottish Natural Heritage. Without this we would not have been able to do anything meaningful. In addition to our funders we are also keen to acknowledge the support/encouragement given to us by the following organisations:

Bat Conservation Trust
Central Scotland Bat Group
Clyde Bat Group
Lothians Bat Group


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