Halloween fun could drive you batty at Kelling Heath

Families heading to Kelling Heath Holiday Park for spooky fun this week could get more than they bargained for after the park was identified as a Halloween hot spot for bats

A total of 10 different species of the nocturnal creatures were discovered flying around the park during recent surveys commissioned by the park and carried out by wildlife expert Carl Brooker.

John Cumming, Kelling’s Estates Quality & Assurance Manager, is hoping they might make a timely appearance to add to the atmosphere as guests and visitors enjoy the park’s Halloween activities programme on Thursday evening.

He said: “Everyone associates bats with Halloween, but our dedicated countryside team works hard throughout the year to protect and enhance the park’s natural environment so that creatures like this have the ecosystem they need to thrive in their natural habitat. That’s why the survey results are so pleasing and why we’re keeping our fingers crossed for a few fly pasts on Thursday evening!”

Kelling’s Pumpkin Carving Competition and Halloween Fancy Dress Parade is suitable for all ages and starts at 4.30pm. Those feeling a little braver can join a guided Night Walk starting at 6.30pm.

More than 9,000 bat passes were recorded by automated equipment during the three-night survey. Species spotted included the common pipistrelle and the nationally rare barbastelle.

Dr Stuart Newson, Senior Research Ecologist and Research Fellow at the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) said: “Kelling Heath Holiday Park is clearly an important habitat for bats. The survey results just goes to show what a great job the park is doing to encourage and maintain the diversity of species needed to support such a large bat population.”

Kelling Heath Holiday Park is the perfect choice for families looking to embrace Halloween as it is officially recognised as having some of the darkest skies in the country.

Last month it won a Good Lighting Award from the British Astronomical Association’s Commission for Dark Skies.