The Manx Bat Group has become the Isle of Man’s 300th UNESCO Biosphere Partner after making a commitment to promote “sustainability, conservation and education”.
This program encourages organizations such as schools, charities and businesses to demonstrate their commitment to the island as a UNESCO Biosphere.
A biosphere is a vision for the island to create a sustainable future.
The MBG is a wildlife group working to conserve the island’s nine species of bats. The activities and organization of the MBG are managed by a voluntary committee.
This is done through educational talks, regular meetings, activities such as guided hikes during the summer and surveys led by volunteers.
It also offers advice to property owners and developers regarding bat activity.
It also rescues and cares for sick, injured and stranded bats found on the island.
Clare Barber MHK, Minister for Environment, Food and Agriculture and Deputy Chair of the UNESCO Isle of Man Biosphere, last week presented the group’s Chair, Nick Pinder, with a certificate welcoming their newest partner.
The minister was “delighted to welcome the group”.
She said: “Connecting people to nature, the challenges it faces and the important role of conservation and education is a key element of the status of our biosphere.
“The committed volunteers of the Manx Bat Group make an important contribution to this.
“I am delighted to welcome this long-established charity as our 300th partner.
“I hope his work and that of our other partners will inspire even more organizations to make decisions and take action that contribute to a sustainable future for people and nature.”
Nick Pinder, Chairman of MBG added: “We are very proud to be the 300th Partner.
“Our work has already contributed significantly to the Biosphere Goals and formalizing this relationship can only help us continue to do so, for the benefit of both bats and people on the Isle of Man.
“It will also help raise our profile.”
There are currently nine bat species on the Isle of Man.
These are brown long-eared, spotted, Leisler’s, Natterer’s, dwarf, whiskered, and soprano pipistrelle.
Anyone who comes across a sick or injured bat can call the group’s bat hotline on 336177.
The MBG was formed in 1990 following the introduction of the Wildlife Act, which first gave Manx bats legal protection.
It was established to promote the knowledge, study and welfare of bats in and around the Isle of Man.
It gives volunteers a vehicle to have discussions about bat issues, research Manx bats, and provide independent advice on bat issues to the public.
If you would like to join the group and help with their work of tracking bats and protecting roosts, you can do so easily by visiting manxbatgroup.org.
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