Name: Common Pipistrelle
Scientific name: Pipistrellus pipistrellus
Nature Stars: 60
The Common Pipistrelle is our smallest bat, at just 7cm with a wingspan of about 20cm. This is also our commonest bat. All British bats are nocturnal, feeding on midges, moths and other flying insects. They use echolocation to find their prey in the dark. Pipistrelles roost in the roof spaces of houses and can often be seen in gardens, either at dusk or feeding on insects around street lights. Pipistrelles hibernate over the winter, usually between November and April, although they may come out to feed on insects on warm days in the winter.
How to identify: A small bat, with dark golden-brown fur, a slightly paler belly and a darker mask around the face.
Where: Widespread, found throughout the country, only absent from Shetland and parts of Orkney
Fantastic fact: The Pipistrelle is one of our smallest mammals, so small it can fit into a matchbox.
Photograph credit: Kim Taylor/naturepl