Find out about some of the projects we do to protect bats/pekapeka.

Both bat/pekapeka species are threatened by rats, cats, stoats and possums. Because bats have such large home ranges, with a single colony occupying up to 100km2, pest control to protect them needs to cover large areas.

Our research in the Eglinton Valley in Fiordland has shown the long-tailed bat population only started recovering when pest control was expanded to more than 3000 ha. DOC’s National Predator Control Programme is essential to recover bat populations in our forests.

Bats are monitored at several places throughout New Zealand to inform and refine how pest management can protect bats.

The DOC Electronics team developed the “AR4” bat recorder, now widely used in NZ to survey for bats. DOC also administers a national database of bat records so we can learn more about bat distribution and how that changes over time.

Resources for bat workers

The NZ Bat Recovery Group has developed best practice guidance and advice notes for bat workers.

Browse and download bat recovery documents

(Note: This links to our Cerberus download site. Get help on downloading files.)

Information and resources for the AR4 bat recorders are available from the DOC Electronics web page. An app for testing recorders is available from Google Play Store (Look for “DOC – Bat Recorder Tester” from Tussock Innovation Ltd).

Bat records can be submitted to, preferably using the Bat records sample spreadsheet (XLSX, 45K).

For advice on the care of sick or injured bats refer to the Initial veterinary care for New Zealand bats manual (PDF, 2,331K). and the Bat care advice for first responders (PDF, 235K).

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