1st April 2023 0 By John Deaux

BLOODSTOCK takes its green initiatives seriously and every year commits to further sustainability improvements. A 2022 environmental study means that BLOODSTOCK now has some further news to report ahead of 2023’s event. 


The study found a significant presence of pink-freckled Daubenton bats (myotis alfoporli) along the stretch of the River Trent that runs alongside the festival’s location. This is important because bats and their roosts are protected by the UK’s Wildlife and Countryside Act 1989. These “water bats” use sound to navigate their surroundings and locate their prey via echolocation, feeding on insects that are near fresh water.  


Official countryside ranger Jack White has been tracking the bats extensively in recent months. The bats are roosting in the oak trees along the river bank and emerging from hibernation to form a large maternity colony. The subsequent report means that BLOODSTOCK is subject to a restricted noise order for the 2023 event so as to not disturb the bats and as such will need to head-bang more quietly this year.

However, BLOODSTOCK is pleased to announce that for 2023’s event, there will now be a limited number of non-motorised boats operating on the Trent at the festival. These punts will be used to offer bat-spotting river trips. There will also be places available on riverside bat walks. Both options will include detailed educational talks about bat habitats (including in caves) and other bat facts (like the speed of flight, identification etc). Selina Kyle, from the Derby branch of the Bat Observation Association, says “We are delighted that BLOODSTOCK is embracing its new neighbours. We will have our special searchlight set up on the riverbank to assist and look forward to helping everyone spot the bats.”


The pink-freckled Daubenton’s bat is a small/medium-sized bat, with brown fur, a very freckled silver belly, and a pink face. Males have bright pink feet. The bats emerge around dusk and typically fly only a couple of centimetres above the water’s surface, snatching insects from the water. Boat trips will operate Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for 3 hours around dusk before the night gets too dark. 

A recent study by the University of Southern Denmark researchers found Daubenton bats use the same vocal structures as death metal singers to make their unique vocalisations. What does this type of bat sound like? Click below to hear what to listen out for.

What does the Daubenton Bat sound like? Click to listen.

In addition, the non-motorised boats will be operating as river shuttles on Thursday afternoon and Friday morning to transport you, your mates, and your tent from the car park down into the festival grounds – within metres of the campsites. So why not get a punt to your campsite?


All boat or bat activities must be pre-booked in advance. Please note, slots are limited and will be available on a first-booked, first-served basis. For further info, and to prebook or reserve your spot, click here.  Don’t tell Ozzy…

Interested to learn more about bats? Visit:

BLOODSTOCK will take place at Catton Park, Derbyshire on 10th-13th August 2023. 

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