Bats, bugs and citizen science, Wednesday 24 January 2024

On 24 January 2024, UCD’s Emma Teeling and Bat Conservation Ireland’s Niamh Roche delivered a captivating exploration on the Bats and Bugs project and the fascinating world of Irish bats and their vital role in pest insect consumption.  Delve into the groundbreaking Identifying Irish Bats and their Prey aka Bats and Bugs initiative, spearheaded by UCD’s Professor Emma Teeling and Bat Conservation Ireland’s Niamh Roche. Their presentation demonstrated the importance of the contribution made by citizen scientists to this research project.

Begun in 2021, the Bats and Bugs project applied citizen science to get volunteer bat roost custodians to collect bat droppings from sites across Ireland. In this talk, we:

  • Learned how the project recruited, and trained volunteers and how samples were collected safely and sent back to UCD for state-of-the-art DNA analysis.
  • Heard how the project and samples answered crucial questions about the types of prey bats consume and their impact on crop and environmental health.
  • Discovered how the project partnered with the National Biodiversity Data Centre to produce the new field guide Identification Guide to Irish Bats which aims to help readers distinguish bats in their local area.

The Identifying Irish Bats and their Prey project was funded by The Community Foundation for Ireland and the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

This is a UCD citizen science community of practice hybrid event. The UCD citizen science community of practice is supported by the UCD Library and UCD Earth Institute. To find out more, visit our website or join our mailing list.