The Cornwall Bat Hospital
What do you do if you find a lost or grounded bat?

Prepare a cardboard box with air holes made by pushing a pencil through a tight-fitting lid (e.g. shoe box is ideal).
Line box with kitchen or toilet paper, then place scrunched-up toilet paper on top to allow hiding place for bat.
Offer bat water immediately, either on end of teaspoon or chemical-free brush, and put a small lid of water in the box.
Place bat carefully into box, and store in a dark warm place.

Please note:

Bats may be cold or torpid, which is normal.
When a bat is warm it will be ready to move very fast, even fly away, so don’t be fooled.

What do I do next?

So your information is clear and precise when asking for help, you must decide what set of circumstances apply to your bat:
1. Note where bat was found (place and time).
2. Has the bat been injured?
* Look for blood or obvious signs.
* Broken bones and holes in the wings?

3. Is the bat dehydrated, starving or suffering from poisoning?
* Look for evidence of chemical spraying (e.g. crop spraying / timber treatment / roof repairs).
* Note weather conditions.

4. Has the bat been trapped?
* Bat may have been locked in and suffering from dehydration or starvation.

5. Is the bat a baby/juvenile?
* Very difficult to tell because of size if bat is baby, juvenile or adult (see section on baby bats).
Please seek advice as bat could be released at dusk if fit and flying.
Is it a baby or juvenile bat?
Babies are born between the months of May and July, depending on weather conditions. They take up to six weeks to become fully weaned and adult size. They can fly from approximately three to five weeks (dependent on species).

If the bat has little or no fur it is only a few days old. If well furred then it can be difficult to tell the age. All babies must have regular feeding so it is best to get them back into the roost with mum immediately - please ring for expert advice on how, what and when to feed as this depends on age.

How to find a roost!

Pipistrelle babies in particular may be dropped by mum outside, or often wander out of their roost, and may be returned if entrance hole can be found. These are often indicated by mouse-like droppings on the outside walls and windows underneath. Again ring for advice to help find the roost and check the species of bat found.
As with all wild animals, especially those which may be sick, avoid being bitten. Carefully use a thin cloth or gloves to pick up and place in secure container.

Where can I get help?

Because bats are such specialised animals and are protected by law, a Bat Helpline has been created so that expert free advice and guidance is available, from bat wardens, on how to deal with all bat-related problems, including the treatment and the care of grounded bats.