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Bats and the law

All bat species found in Scotland and their roosts are protected by law. A roost is any structure or place that a bat, or group of bats, uses for shelter or protection. Bats can use a variety of features for roosting at different times of the year (e.g. bridge, building, underground sites and trees). As bats can return to the feature every year, their roost is protected even if no bats are present.

Help, I've found a bat

If you find a grounded bat in your property, you should call either the Bat Conservation Trust's National Bat Helpline on 0345 1300 228 or the Scottish SPCA's Animal Helpline on 03000 999 999 for advice on how to best handle and remove the bat.

Please not that we are a voluntary organisation and do not undertake any bat surveys that may be required to enable development or obtain planning permission. Please see 'Advice for developers'.

Advice for homeowners

If you think you have bats in your home and they are causing a health or safety problem, you should contact NatureScot's Bats in Houses Helpline on 01463 725 165. NatureScot may arrange for an experienced bat workers to visit your house to collect information that will help to resolve the problems caused by bats.

Advice for developers

Professional advice should be sought if you are planning an activity that could modify or remove a feature that could be used by bats; or the activity could disturb bats. A planning authority may also advise that you undertake a bat survey in order to obtain planning permission.