Kennington park is home to Pipistrelle bats, Latin name pipistrellus pipistrellus. They are the most common of the 17 species of British bats, and the smallest. Their colour varies from pale brown to almost black, but generally they have red-brown fur. They have small dog-like faces with a broad flat head and short, broad ears. They have fairly narrow wings and a short tail and their ears and muzzles are darker than their fur. Their head and body length is 3.5 to 4.5cm and their wingspan is 19 to 25cm.
The Pipistrelle live in some of the large trees in the park and emerge from roosting as dusk falls, generally earlier on warmer nights, when they come out to feed. They have a fast jerky flight as they chase, catch and eat insects in mid-air, flying between 5 to 10 metres above the ground. They can catch and consume up to 3,000 insects in one night.
The Friends of Kennington Park hold regular bat walks led by Dr Iain Boulton from Lambeth Council - check out News & Events for the next dates.
The Friends highlight that bats are a protected species, and their breeding sites and resting places are protected by law.
If you want to learn more about bats in the UK head to www.bats.org.uk