A MAN has been fined for destroying a bat roost in Redditch.

Stephen Yoxhall, of Atherstone, pleaded guilty to the destruction of a bat roost at Kidderminster Magistrates Court on Tuesday, April 24.

The offence occurred when work was being undertaken to develop a business unit in Holberrow Green, Redditch.

A bat survey undertaken in support of the planning application identified the presence of common pipistrelle summer roosts.

Yoxhall was made aware that destruction of the roosts should only be undertaken once a licence had been issued by natural England.

No licence was sought and the work resulted in the destruction of roosts.

It was accepted that the work was undertaken at a time when bats would not have been present.

He was fined £300 and ordered to pay costs of £135.

Pc Simon Albutt, Wildlife Crime Officer (WCO), said: "We take rural and wildlife crime very serous in West Mercia Police and we will work with other agencies, to bring any offenders to justice.

"Bats are European Protected Species (EPS) due to their decline and vulnerability across Europe, this means they require legal protection that covers individual bats and their roosts."