Thorndon Bat Project

To particpate please refer to our events page for a list of upcoming dates.

Thorndon provides rich and diverse habitats which are ideal for bats (image copyright: Graham Hart)

Thorndon Country Park (North and South) is owned and managed by Essex County Council but also incorporates land acquired by The Woodland Trust. This large open space is a very popular spot for locals as well as those seeking a day out from the urban environments of east London. The Park is a beautiful mosaic of different woodland types, lakes, ponds and grasslands and mature hedgerows with links to neighbouring countryside typical of south Essex.

Over the years there have been a number of bat walks and one-off surveys which have given us an insight into its potential as a bat hot spot.  In 2016, Thorndon was included as a priority site for the inaugural year of our new Woodland Bat Project.  However, the Park itself is so large and varied in its landscape and habitats that the Bat Group feels it is deserving of its own stand-alone project.  So, in 2017, Graham Hart (who leads the Weald Bat Project) will be starting up a brand new project at Thorndon Park using some of the techniques and protocols used at Weald to learn more about the bat population of Thorndon. There is already a workshop scheduled for Saturday 25th February on assessing trees for bat roost potential.   Detector surveys will follow from April onwards and will be closely linked to the Woodland Bat Project with its use of static and hand held detectors.

The target and main priority for 2017 will be to find out whether barbastelles, an elusive woodland specialist, are using Thorndon Country Park.  However, we will also be hoping to gain a more detailed picture of all bat activity as well looking for tree roosts.  Survey dates will be announced before the end of February and will be posted on our website, facebook and sent via email.  In the meantime, you can register your interest with Graham Hart via email at woodlandbats@essexbatgroup.org.

Map of Thorndon:  For further visitor details and access visit the Essex County Council Essex Country Parks website.