Bat Detector Information Pack
Bat Detector Information Pack
The basics
There are three types of bat detector:
1. Heterodyne
Heterodyne detectors are tuneable – you select the frequency range to listen to. This makes them
the best detectors for immediate identification of bats in the field.
They work by filtering the inaudible bat sound with an ultrasonic signal from the detector, and
producing the audible difference between the two sounds.
Sounds can be recorded onto a recorder, but recordings cannot be used with sound analysis
software to generate sonograms as frequency information is not retained.
They are the cheapest of the detectors and are simple to use, making them ideal for beginners.
2. Frequency Division
Frequency division detectors detect all frequencies so there is no need to tune into a specific
frequency, and you don‟t miss any bats.
They sample a set of incoming sound waves and take an average to divide the incoming frequency
by a particular factor to give an audible output (e.g. 50kHz ÷ factor of 10 into 5kHz).
Sounds can be recorded and used with sound analysis software but some information is lost.
They are generally low to mid-price but cheaper versions tend not to retain amplitude information.
3. Time Expansion
Like frequency division detectors, Time Expansion detectors detect all frequencies.
They work by digitally recording a short snatch of sound (e.g. 1 second), then playing it back at a
slower speed, resulting in the highest quality recording of all the detector types and retention of the
most information. The disadvantage is that while the detector is playing back the slowed-down
sounds, it becomes "deaf" to any bats flying past so continuous recording is not possible.
Sounds can be recorded and used with sound analysis software. They enable a very detailed
analysis of the sound and a clearer sonogram when compared to frequency division.
They are the most expensive of the detectors.
Additional note
Some detectors feature more than one type of sound conversion, for example some frequency
division detectors have a heterodyne mode as well, and some feature all three models of sound
conversion. These detectors are the most expensive.
There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a bat detector. These include:
Price
Microphone and frequency range: Microphones determine the sensitivity of the bat detector.
Piezo – best at mid frequencies (~45kHz), Electret – lower frequencies (<30kHz), and Capitance –
higher frequencies (>80kHz). You will still be able to detect other frequencies, but the distance you can
detect them from will vary. Detectors with more than one microphone are best because they will be
sensitive at more than one frequency (e.g. Pettersson D100 overleaf). All European species are
detectable within the range 20-120kHz.
Bandwidth: How many kHz either side of your tuned frequency you can hear calls on (heterodyne). A
wider bandwidth reduces the chances of missing species you are not tuned into, while a narrower
bandwidth makes it easier to discern the difference between bats calling at similar frequencies.
Design: size, display (LED/LCD), controls on side or top (side-controls easier for single-handed
operation)
The following is a guide to some of the detectors that are available on the market at the present time, and their
main features. It is not intended as a review, and prices should only be used as a guide.
Heterodyne Bat Detectors (Summary, in price order)
Model
Approx
cost
£36
Microphone
(type & no.)
Unknown
Freq.
range
Unknown
Bandwidth
Batteries
Size (mm)
Speaker
16kHz
(± 8kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
145x80x34
Y
Semafor
UF-140
£45
Unknown
10-140kHz
Unknown
1 x 9V
(PP3)
145x60x45
Y
Semafor
UF-220
£55
Unknown
10-220kHz
Unknown
1 x 9V
(PP3)
145x60x45
Y
Ciel CDB
105 R2
Mono
£60
Electret (1)
18-120kHz
10kHz
(± 5kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
140x64x31
Y
Magenta
Bat4
£60
Electret (1)
15-130kHz
9kHz
(± 4kHz)
4 x AAA
145x80x34
Y
Ciel CDB
103 R3
Stereo
£90
Electret (2)
15-130kHz
10kHz
(± 5kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
170x75x40
Y
Magenta
Bat5
£90
Electret (1)
10-130kHz
9kHz
(± 4kHz)
4 x AAA
135x72x27
Y
Ciel CDB
101 R3
Stereo
£115
Electret (2)
15-130kHz
10kHz
(± 5kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
170x75x40
N
Mini-3
£145
Electret (1)
15-160kHz
8kHz
(± 4kHz)
2 x AA
147x65x40
Y
Batbox IIID
£150
Electret (1)
19-125kHz
16kHz
(± 8kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
125x69x32
Y
Ciel CDP
102 R3
Professional
Stereo
£150
Electret (2)
- external
15-130kHz
13kHz
(± 6.5kHz)
External
9-12V
DC
Source
125x75x40
N
Pettersson
D100
£185
Electret (1)
& Piezo (2)
10-120kHz
8kHz
(± 4kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
113x71x33
Y
Pettersson
D200
£225
Electret (1)
10-120kHz
8kHz
(± 4kHz)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
119x60x25
Y
Magenta
MkII Kit
Design features/
other factors
Requires soldering &
electronics skills & the
ability to understand
circuit diagrams.
Integrated LED torch.
( „BATZ‟ model also
available-same spec.
aimed at children)
LED torch. Large
frequency dial with top
illumination. Side
controls for singlehanded operation. Wrist
strap.
LED display.
LCD display with
backlighting. Inbuilt
LED torch. Side
controls for singlehanded operation. Wrist
strap.
LCD display. External
speaker can be added.
Large illuminated
tuning dial. BBC
Wildlife Magazine
“Best buy”.
12.5mm digital LCD
display with backlight.
Side controls for singlehanded operation.
Boxed (for mounting
and long-term surveys).
Stereo/dual option-can
observe 2 frequencies at
the same time. LCD
display.
Built in speaker. Backlit
frequency control.
Fully backlit LCD
display. Side controls –
easy to adjust.
Broadband Bat Detectors
Frequency Division Detectors (Summary, in price order)
Model
Approx
cost
Division
Factor
Microphone
Freq.
range
Amplitude
retaining
Batteries
Size
(mm)
Design features/
other factors
1 x 9V
(PP3)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
140x64x31
Built in speaker and
LED torch.
Non-tuneable. Small
internal speaker
Comes with
BatScan sound
analysis software.
Very simple design
& easy singlehanded operation.
Inbuilt speaker.
Single-hand
operation.
FREQUENCY DIVISION ONLY
Ciel CDB
205 Mono
Belfry Bat
Detector
Batbox
Baton
£60
10
Electret (1)
18-120kHz
N
£65
Unknown
Unknown
25-100kHz
N
£70
10
Electret (1)
20-120kHz
Y
Anabat II
& ZCAIM
(phasing
out)
Anabat SD1
£400
4,8,16,32
Electret (1)
10-200kHz
N/A
1 x 9V
(PP3)
Unknown
£1400
8,16,32
Electret (1)
10-200kHz
N/A
4 x AA
(internal)
or 12V
(external)
159x90x45
LED indicator. Uses
compact flash
memory cards for
data storage. GPS
recorder can be
connected. Real
time clock.
Programmable
monitoring.
Unknown
165x46x34
FREQUENCY DIVISION AND HETERODYNE
Ciel CDB
305 R2 Dual
£100
10
Electret (1)
18-120kHz
Bandwidth:
10kHz
(± 5kHz)
15-120kHz
Bandwidth:
10kHz
(± 5kHz)
N
1 x 9V
(PP3)
140x65x40
Built in speaker
Ciel CDB
301 R3
Advanced
£200
10
Electret (2)
Y
1 x 9V
(PP3)
170x75x35
Unknown (2)
15-130kHz
Bandwidth:
10kHz
(± 5kHz)
Y
1 x 9V
(PP3)
Unknown
Backlit LCD
display. Separate
microphones for
each function.
Commentary button
enabling notetaking.
Boxed (for mounting
and long-term
surveys).
Ciel CDP
302
(Available
from April
2009)
Batbox
Duet
Price to
be
advised
10
£270
10
Electret (1)
17-125kHz
bandwidth:
16kHz
(± 8kHz)
Y
1 x 9V
(PP3)
125x69x32
Pettersson
D230
£425
10
Electret (1)
Y
1 x 9V
(PP3)
119x60x25
£525
10,20,40
Unknown
10-120kHz
Bandwidth:
8kHz
(± 4kHz)
15-200kHz
U30
Y
2 x AA
147x65x40
Large LED display
and control for
single-handed
operation. Wrist
strap.
LCD Display.
Comment switch.
Miniature „ultralow-noise‟
microphone
Time Expansion Detectors (Summary, in price order)
Model
Approx
cost
Expansion
Factor
Microphone
Freq.
range
Batteries
Size (mm)
Design features/ other
factors
145x95x45
Hands-free (worn around
neck). No speaker.
4 x AA (&
internal
battery)
1 x 9V
(PP3)
155x95x52
4 x AA
170x110x40
LED display. Internal
digital recorder. 10.24sec
memory.
LCD Display. Comment
switch. Storage time 3.4,
1.7 or 0.1sec. Automatic
or manual trigger.
25.6sec memory. Voice
commentary. Time tag30min intervals. Back-toback recording.
TIME EXPANSION ONLY
£470
Tranquility
Transect
N/A
Capacitive
10-160kHz
4 x AA
TIME EXPANSION AND HETERODYNE
Tranquility
III
£750
10,32,64
Capacitive
12-160kHz
Pettersson
D240x
£1100
10
Advanced
Electret (1)
10-120kHz
8kHz
(± 4kHz)
ECO-Mega
£1550
10,32,64
Capacitor
12-160kHz
119x60x25
Time Expansion, Frequency Division and Heterodyne
Model
Approx
cost
Frequency/
Expansion
Factor
Microphone
Freq.
range
Batteries
Size
(mm)
Design features/ other
factors
Batbox Griffin
Price to
be
advised.
Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
AA
Unknown
Built in recording. Date,
time, temperature & light
reading levels.
Programmable menudriven function set-up.
£3800
From 1
(original
speed) to 30
Capacitance
(1)
10-200kHz
Internal
batteries or
external
power
supply
6-10V
170x80x35
First bat detector with a
built-in digital “tape
recorder”. 16-bit
recording system using
compact flashcard as
storage. Manuel or leveltriggering modes .
Comments recording
mode.
(Launch date to
be announced)
Pettersson
D1000x
(built to
order)
Real-time Bat Recorders (for long-term, unattended monitoring)
Model
Approx cost
Microphone
Freq. range
Batteries
Size (mm)
Design features/ other factors
Pettersson
D500x
£1699
Electret (1)
4 x AA
or
external
power
supply
184x172x52
Detects and records ultrasound in
real-time. Aimed for long-term
unattended recording of bat calls.
Four slots for CompactFlash
memory cards with total capacity
of 128GB. Triggering system
allowing device to start recording
as sound is detected.
Batcorder
€2400
Electret (1)
N/A
Sampling
rates:
44.1kHz,
300kHz and
500kHz
(optimised
for 500kHz)
16-150kHz
4 x AA
Unknown
Analyses microphone signal in
real-time and discriminates
between bat calls and other sound
signals. Autonomous long-term
monitoring. Independent recording
device and software built to cooperate with the hardware.
(Email
[email protected]
for quote)
Manufacturers and suppliers (details correct at time of going to print)
Alana Ecology Ltd: www.alanaecology.com The Old Primary School, Church Street, Bishop's Castle,
Shropshire, SY9 5AE. Tel: +44 (0)1588 630173. Email: [email protected]
Anabat SD1
Batbox: III-D, Baton, Duet, Griffin
Magenta: MKII Kit, Bat4, Bat5
Mini-3
Pettersson D100, D200, D230, D240x, D500x, D1000x
Batbox Ltd: www.batbox.com 2A Chanctonfold, Horsham Road, Steyning, West Sussex, BN44 3AA. Tel:
01903:816298. Email: [email protected]
Batbox III-D, Baton, Duet
Bat Management: www.batmanagement.com US-based – email for a UK quote [email protected]
Pettersson D200, D500x (only available here), D1000x
Bat Planet: www.batplanet.co.uk C/o Yarwood Ltd, Treefield Industrial Estate, Gelderd Road, Leeds LS27 7JU.
Email [email protected]
Full range of Ciel detectors (not including CDP 302)
Belfry bat detector
Bioquip: www.bioquip.net
Batbox III-D and Duet
Full range of Ciel detectors (not including CDP 302)
Courtpan: http://courtpan.gnxt.net 3 Suffolk Street, Cheltenham, GL50 2DH. Tel: 01242 570123. Email
[email protected]
Tranquillity Transect, Tranquility III, ECO-Mega
EcoObs: www.ecoobs.com. Contact via online contact form http://www.ecoobs.com/cnt-contact.html
Batcorder
Green witch: www.green-witch.com (search for bat detectors) Tel: 01954 211 288
Batbox: III-D, Baton, Duet, Griffin (available to pre-order)
Magenta Electronics Ltd: www.magenta2000.co.uk 135 Hunter Street, Burton on Trent, Staffs, DE14 2ST.
Tel: 01283 565435. Email: [email protected]
Magenta: MKII Kit, Bat4, Bat5
Pettersson Elektronik AB: www.batsound.com Sweden-based – email for a UK quote [email protected]
Full range of Pettersson detectors (except D500x)
Semafor: http://www.semafor.co.uk/bat-detector.html Email: [email protected] (for a catalogue)
Semafor UF-140, UF-220 (Please note that both models are currently marked as „unavailable‟ on their website.)
Titley Electronics: www.titley.com.au Australia-based – can be shipped to UK. Email: [email protected]
Anabat II is being phased out, and Anabat SD1 is also available from UK suppliers Alana Ecology (details above).
Anabat II, Anabat SD1
Ultra Sound Advice: http://www.ultrasoundadvice.co.uk 27 Merton Hall Road, Wimbledon, London SW19 3PR.
Tel: 020 8287 4614. Email: [email protected]
Mini3 Detector, U30 Detector
Sound Analysis Software
A selection of software packages for analysing bat echolocation calls recorded using a broadband bat detector
(time expansion or frequency division).
 Adobe Audition v 3.0. Is a substantial package that calculates all the start/end/peak frequencies of a
pulse for you and you can do great manipulations with the sound. It can also convert batches of mp3 or
other formats to WAV format really quickly. You can also listen to heterodyne separate from the FD
channel on Duet recordings which is a good training tool. Audition is available as a 30 day try-out and
the full package is $350. Web site http://www.adobe.com/uk/products/audition/
 Avisoft at www.avisoft.com offers free download of a minimal program called SAS lab Light (5.7
MB) for very basic editing and generation of spectrograms. The full Avisoft has a whole range of
functions although it takes time to learn how to use them all.
 Bat Scan available from www.batbox.com comes with a selection of sample files so that you can
compare your own recordings. It costs £17 (plus VAT and delivery) and is a simplified version of
Spectrogram. In general it is faster and easier to use than BatSound, but does not have all of the
functions, although the sonogram is nice and clear and there are memory saving devices. Follow up
service and advice is always outstanding. It is also available from Alana ecology
www.alanaecology.com at £30 (including VAT).
 BatSound the original software developed especially for use with ultrasonic bat calls. It is available
from Alana Ecology www.alanaecology.com and costs around £275 and more for multiple licenses.
BatSound has a nice big window for sonograms and an easy to use toolbar with shortcut buttons that
operate on a mouse click for common functions. It has lot of extra tools but also some annoying little
quirks like re-setting your parameters as you are working. The help files are generally well structured
and easy to use. You can download an evaluation version for free from the BatSound website at
http://www.batsound.com/psonan.html (1210kb).
 Bat Wave Analyzer can be found by going to the Arboriculture Information Exchange site at
http://www.aie.org.uk/ and look in the A-Z index for Bats. It has been developed by Chris Skillern and
is available as a free download at the moment (you will need 364k). There is also a help manual to go
with the program. It allows all the usual recording and analysis and notes can be inserted onto the sound
wave and saved with the file. Totally free so well worth snapping it up while you can.
 bcAnalyze 1.0 is a programme designed to work with real-time recordings of bat calls. To be used with
recordings from the batcorder system http://www.ecoobs.com/cnt-bcAnalyze.html. A call finding
algorithm quickly finds calls within the recording. A license costs €140 (+VAT) and runs for 30 days in
trial mode. System requirement is a Mac running Mac OS X 10.5.
 Cool Edit Pro 2.1 an old favourite taken over by Audition is now available as a free download from
http://www.softpedia.com/progDownload/Cool-Edit-Pro-Download-2076.html (18.20 MB).
It is not the full version but is still useful and recommended for people that want to have a try with a
simple program. The spectrogram and oscillogram cannot be viewed simultaneously.
 The Bioacoustics Research Programme at Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology developed a well
respected sound program called Canary some time ago. It is free to download, but unfortunately only
runs on Mackintosh http://www.birds.cornell.edu/brp/software/canary-information. The user manual has
some really useful background information about how spectrograms are created and analysed. If you are
willing to delve into some physics it can help you to use other sound analysis programs more
effectively. Relevant sections (available from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/brp/software) are Appendix
A: Digital Representation of Sound, and Appendix B: A Biologists Introduction to Spectrum Analysis:
 The new sound analysis software from Cornell University, called ‘Raven’ is available from
http://www.birds.cornell.edu/brp/raven/Raven.html. There are two options – Raven v 1.4, and Raven
Lite which is free. Full version is able to display any number of sound files simultaneously, with each
file in its own window. It has other features that allow you to easily measure, compare and edit parts of
different sequences and sounds. The Raven Lite version has ability to view only a single spectrogram at
one time. Both versions are available for Mac OSX or PC. The full version is US $400 ($100/year for
students).
 Sonobat v 2.5.5 is a program developed in the USA. It includes an auto-trigger recording function
developed especially for the D240x set up to trigger automatically & allowing remote recording to a
digital recorder. It allows you to look at reference calls in the same window next to a call that you are
trying to identify. Reference calls are automatically adjusted to match time and frequency scale of the
one you are looking at. Analysis functions are plentiful including definition of low/high frequencies,
bandwidth, duration, heel, slope, characteristic frequencies, harmonics and automatic calculation of the
inter-pulse interval. The program costs US$320. There is a free downloadable demo of v2.4 for Mac
and PC. www.sonobat.com.
 Sony Sound Forge available at http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/products/soundforgefamily.asp.
These are audio editing and production software. Sound Forge Audio studio costs £33.29 and there is a
free trial available. Also available is Sound Forge 9 – Professional audio production suite, costing
£230.
 Spectrogram v 16 processes both ultrasonic and audible sound. You have to select the ultrasound
controls and it has a lot of functions that are not relevant for bat analysis. It can take a while to set up
the parameters to your personal requirements although once done it is easy enough to use. The help file
is huge but otherwise it is similar to BatScan. Most operations use function keys. It is free to download
at http://www.visualizationsoftware.com/gram.html. Richard Horne who developed it is very helpful
and any queries receive a quick response.
 Syrinx is another program designed by Dr John Burt for bird calls. It shows a spectrographic rolling
display and allows analysis and editing. It can be obtained for free after filling in a short application
form at http://syrinxpc.com.
 TF32 is a free programme which is very simple to use. There is a user manual available on the website
http://www.medsch.wisc.edu/~milenkvc/tools.html.
 Wavesurfer – another completely free program available from http://www.speech.kth.se/wavesurfer.
This was developed for speech analysis and you need to establish your own spectrogram parameters and
save them so you need to know a little about the terminology (FFTs etc.) or you can look at the ibats
website for instructions written by Dr Jon Russ http://www.ibats.org.uk/page.aspx?tabid=256
Web addresses frequently change. If the link no longer works enter the programme name in a search engine
such as Yahoo or Google.
Oct 2009 The Bat Conservation Trust, 15 Cloisters House, 8 Battersea Park Road, London SW8 4BG
Tel: 0845 1300 228 Fax: 020 7627 2628 Email: [email protected] www.bats.org.uk
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