Understanding biodiversity patterns as well as drivers of population declines, and range losses provides crucial baselines for monitoring and conservation. However, the information needed to evaluate such trends remains unstandardised and sparsely available for many taxonomic groups and habitats, including the cave-dwelling bats and cave ecosystems. We developed the DarkCideS 1.0 initiative, a global collaborative database of bat caves and bat species based on curated data from the literature, personal collections, and existing datasets. The database contains information for geographical distribution, ecological status, species traits, and parasites and hyperparasites for 679 bat species known to occur in caves or use caves in their life histories. The database contains 6746 georeferenced occurrences for 402 cave-dwelling bat species from 2002 cave sites in 46 countries and 12 terrestrial biomes. The database has been developed to be a collaborative, open-access, and user-friendly platform, allowing continuous data-sharing among the community of bat researchers and conservation biologists. The database has a range of potential applications in bat research and enables comparative monitoring and prioritisation for conservation.