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Caithness News Bulletins September 2004

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The two Caithness wildlife workshops held recently by Ranger in The Highland Councils' Planning and Development Service proved to be a great success. The 'Batty about Bats' workshop at Dunbeath attracted more than a dozen people and the 'Caithness Cetaceans' workshop at Lybster saw more than thirty people over the course of the day.

The Bat Workshop Group

The Seawatch Group

 Both workshops corresponded with National events taking place over Britain and were organised to raise awareness of cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoise) and bats found in the local area.  The Bat workshop fitted in with the UK Bat Night and the Cetacean Workshop, with the end of the National Whale and Dolphin Watch.

The workshops offered wonderful insight into species which can be found in Caithness and provided many helpful tips on identifying the various kinds of bats, whales and dolphins.

Identification skills were put to use up the Strath of Dunbeath on Saturday evening when 45 Pipistrelle bats were detected using bat detector boxes.  Unfortunately, the weather conditions on Sunday made cetacean watching extremely difficult and attempts to spot any activity were in vain.

Marina Finlayson, workshop organiser and East Caithness Ranger said: "The workshops proved very popular and it was great to see the interest generated by the people attending. Our expert speakers, made the events informative but fun at the same time. Many thanks to our workshop speakers, Iain Macdonald, (our local Seawatch Foundation Co-ordinator), Anne Youngman (from the Bat Conservation Trust) and to the Moray Firth Partnership for funding the Cetacean workshop."