Cornish Biodiversity Network  -  Supporting Wildlife Recording

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Cornish Red Data (2009)

The descriptive text, below the map, is from the Cornish Red Data Book (2009). The map on this web page depicts the organisms distribution and shows the records made pre-2000 and those made since.

Nyctalus noctula - Noctule

Range & Status

Found throughout Europe except for Ireland, most of Scotland and northern Scandanvia. Scattered throughout England and Wales but very rare in areas of intensive agriculture. The population estimate of 45,000 in England, 250 in Scotland and 4750 in Wales is declining nationally and locally (Harris et al ., 1995). No discernable change has been noted in the National Bat Monitoring Programme surveys.

Regional Distribution

Widespread in Cornwall where the largest known roost is located in a building in the west of the county rather than the more typical use of tree roosts. This roost is being closely monitored along with associated tree roosts used by this colony. A further significant tree roost is monitored in the east of the county. The increase from 17 1km squares to 20 is not significant.

Habitat & Ecology

Occurs in woodland, roosting in hollow trees and occasionally buildings. Will use bat boxes. Sometimes found in hibernation when trees are felled. Flies high and fast, dives on large insect prey. Emerges early dusk.


Destruction of mature trees and decline in insect prey.


Extensive legal protection detailed in Introduction. Provide artificial roosts, also survey and protect hollow trees. At low risk of extinction worldwide (IUCN status, 2001). BAP Priority species.


I.J. Bennallick, S. Board, C.N. French, P.A. Gainey, C. Neil, R. Parslow, A. Spalding and P.E. Tompsett. eds. 2009. Red Data Book for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. 2nd Edition.Croceago Press.

The Cornish Red Data Book Project was led by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Federation for Biological Recorders (CISFBR). The full text and species accounts (minus the maps) are available on the CISFBR website.