【The Bat Conservation and Study Group of Japan】
Guidelines for bat watching event
Many people have had a false impression of bats due to misunderstanding
and prejudice. But recently little by little, things have been changing
thanks to many bat lovers.
Every year BSCJ have had a bat watching event accompanied by a bat festival
as it is important to show the public bats in their habitat. We believe
these continual efforts have made a difference for better understanding
But we are a small organization and we can conduct this event only once
a year so it has only a small influence. On the other hand these days many
organizations, including our members, hold bat watching events in many
places around Japan. So we have made guidelines for bat events and give
the title “Authorized by BSCJ” to the events which follow them.
１：When you plan the event
- （Ａ）：Get Insurance
Even if you don't take fees from participants you should take out an insurance
premium (or the organizer should pay) in case of an accident.
- （Ｂ）：Get understanding and permission
Whether the place is a private proterty or public property get the understanding
and permission from the owners or the authorities. In addition if the place
is someone's research field get permission from him or her.
- （Ｃ）：Take precautions against any possible accidents
Do a dry run of the event at the site and go over the place to check for
any potential danger for participants such as ditches,clifs or steps and
take preventive mesures against them. Also take a measure of safety for
traffic. Make sure to do the dry run at the same time of day as the event
will be held.
２：Before the bat watching
- （Ａ）：Bat Talk
Before you take the participants out talk about general bat information
as many people still misunderstand bats. Also explain how fun it will be
to use bat detectors to monitor the bats activities.
- （Ｂ）：Give and care for resident people
Explain to participants that they need to take care not to disturb property
owners or neighbors
- （Ｃ）：Inform the participants of precaution
Explain to participants to mind where they walk and to be careful of traffic
- （Ｄ）：Confirm who actually attends
Make a list of all participants in order to get insurance and in case of
- （Ｅ）：Inform the participants to try to minimize disturbance
When we watch wild animals we disturb them to one degree or another but
the quieter we walk, the less likely we are to disturb the wildlife. And
we should not alter or damage the surroundings to see bats, for example
cutiinng of bushes and we should not shine torches directly at the bats.
３：Bat watching near caves or tree hollow roosts, nightroosts, near street lights and at a riverbank or grassland
- １・Don't get too close to the roost entrance. Keep 10m or more distance
- ２・Cover torches with red cellophane or use infrared cameras for minimum
- ３・Don't speak loudly and don't make loud noises
４：Disapproval of bat watching inside of a cave or a tunnel
BSCJ does not approve bat watching evens inside of a cave or a tunnel
because of the following reasons
- （Ａ）：Potential danger of a serious accident
If any accident happens in a cave or a tunnel, such as a cave in or a fall, the toll would have too grave consequences.
- （Ｂ）：Potential danger of infectious disease from bats and public response
In some countries infectious diseases originating from bat-dwelling caves
have been reported. Fortunately we have never had such a case in Japan.
But we should use caution because exotic pets have not been uncommon and
many pet animals have been imported from overseas possibly resulting in
an invasion of bacteria which may reside in bat habitats.
If an infection from a bat happens the public hysteria could lead to extreme
actions such as extermination of bats ruining the bat conservation efforts
that we have made
- （Ｃ）：Disturbance in bats
Caves are a refuge for bats and if they feel they are in danger they may
abandon the caves.
Public education can be achieved without entering and disturbing the bat
Disturbance during maternity season may result in abandonment of babies
and during hibernation may cause arousal of bats and consequent death from
extra energy consumption
３ How to get the authorization of BSCJ
Fill in the application form below and send it to the BSCJ office or
any committee member. The application is reviewed at the committee and
the president will send the result a month before the event at the very
（Ｂ）：Applications should be sent, at the latest, 2 months before the event.
（Ｃ）：No application fee or authorization fees are necessary. We are not
able to financially support any events at the moment.
（Ｄ）：The BSCJ is not responsible for any trouble of the event.
（Ｅ）：After the event submit a report to the BSCJ office. No fixed form
for the report.
Application form for BSCJ authorization|
Date of application
To the BSCJ president
Your organization name
Name of the president and contact information（Address, Telephone and Fax numbers, e-mail address）
We are goint have a bat watching event which follows the BSCJ guidelines
and we would like to get a permission of the title “Authorized by the BSCJ”
to the event
１ Event organizer：
２ Cohost(if you have any)
３ Supporting organization：（if you have any）
４ Date and time of the event(if you have the event several times, you
can write down in a same application form）
５ Place of the event
７ Who can be participants and how many participants you are going to have
８ Bat species you expect to see
９ An outline of the event
１１ Enclose an event leaflet if you have
４・Coverage of these guidelines
These guidlines are applied to an event which needs an authorization of
We are not going to restrict any bat watching events with no BSCJ authorization
And we are not going to restrict reseach and trainings for aspiring bat
Examples of insurance of recreational event
Insurance for perticipants
・For example an insurance with a premium of 100 yen per event pays 30,000,000yen
upon death and 10,000yen every day at hospital up to 180 days.
Insurance for event organizers and leaders
For example an insurance with a 300 yen premium per year pays at max 11,530,000yen
upon injury of staff and at max 35,0000,000 upon damage conpensation
Ask your local social welfare council for details
Some bat watching events were held in caves even though organizers knew they were someone's research fields. In some bat watching events, leaders or organizers caputured and showed bats without proper permissions.
To stop these llegal, ill effets on bats and dangerouse for participants
events, let us know if you know any.