*  02.02.1937 in Halle/Saale      09.12.2023 in Naumburg

Bodo Stratmann, a very well-known bat conservationist from Halle/Saale, died in December 2023 after a long illness. He was one of the founder of the Working Group on Bat Protection and Research of the GDR on 17.06.1965 at the Institute for Landscape Research and Nature Conservation (ILN) in Halle/Saale, alongside Günter Natuschke (born 19.11.1927, died 17.03.2006), Dr. Erhard Wilfried Schober (born 04.04.1933, died 08.04.2007) and Dr. Joachim Haensel (born 05.06.1938, died 16.04.2014).

These and other people played a decisive role in the development of bat protection in East Germany.

As early as 1969, the first issue of NYCTALUS journal was published under the editorship of Bodo Stratmann, which was continued from 1978 by Tierpark Berlin as editor under the editorship of Dr. Joachim Haensel as ” NYCTALUS New Series”.

Bodo Stratmann, a teacher by profession, was very versatile. He was employed by the ILN for several years and moved to Thale as director of the Hexentanzplatz Zoo, which was founded in 1973, until 1981 and then to Naumburg as a teacher.

Partly professionally and also in his spare time, Bodo meticulously followed the population development of the bat species.

Together with Dr. Schober and later with Dr. Dietrich Heidecke (b. 04.06.1945, d. 24.10.2011) and other actors, they recorded the populations of the lesser horseshoe bat in the south of Saxony-Anhalt. In the area of Lake Müritz near Waren (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania), the large bat box area “Ecktannen” was established, the populations were recorded and individuals were marked with bat arm clamps.

Here he had developed various bat box models and tested them in practice. He achieved his most resounding success with the F1 flat box model Stratmann, also known as the “Stratmann flat box”. This internationally recognized type of box is the basis of numerous box modifications that still exist on the market today.

Bodo was a gifted draughtsman. He is the author of numerous logos that have shaped NYCTALUS in the past and still do today. So it is not surprising that various display boards were created by him.

With the political change in 1989, the GDR’s Working Group on Bat Protection and Research was dissolved. In 1993, due to the federal structures of the federal states in Saxony-Anhalt, the Working Group Bats Saxony-Anhalt e.V. was founded.

With the death of Bodo Stratmann, we have lost one of the last leading architects and practice-oriented experts in bat protection from GDR times. It has left clear traces that were and still are of great importance for species protection in the past and still are today.

By Bernd Ohlendorf, Arbeitskreis Fledermäuse Sachsen-Anhalt e. V.

Bodo Stratmann presents one of his posters
Cover of the first issue of Nyctalus
In memory of Bodo Stratmann