The use of insecticides, which affect their prey availability, may be a reason for the decline of barbastelle bats.
The maximum recorded age is 23 years.
Body length: 4.5-5.8cm, Wingspan: 26-29cm, Weight: 6-13g
Barbastelles have long silky dark-brown fur, which is white-tipped, giving a frosted appearance. They have dark-grey undersides. The face, ears and wing membranes are dark grey-brown.
They range across Europe, from England and Wales to the Caucasus mountains. They are thought to be absent from Spain, Albania and Greece. Barbastelles are also found in Northern Africa.
Their typical habitat is wooded river valleys and mountain regions.
Barbastelles emerge at early dusk to feed on small insects such as moths, flies and beetles. They have small, weak teeth and are unable to bite through the shells of large beetles. They are fast, skilful hunters.
In the summer they roost in roofs and fissures in buildings, tree holes, caves and bat boxes. They hibernate in caves, cellars and trees from October to March/April.
Barbastelles mate in autumn, often in the hibernaculum. Females give birth to one young from mid-June. The young are weaned after about six weeks.
Barbastelles are classified as Vulnerable by the 2000 IUCN Red List.