Bat Appreciation Month
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BAT MONTH

October is the perfect time to recognize Bat Appreciation Month.

These winged mammals are drawn to invasive insects like teenagers to a vampire movie. They devour them just as quickly as the made teens poured through the pages of the trilogy, too. And where would we be without the bats that pollinate our favorite fruits? Despite the bad rap they’ve received since 1897 when Bram Stoker wrote about the undead, bats demand respect.

Consider their ability to navigate with precision via echolocation. They are also one of the largest and longest living species on earth. Even the smallest at approximately one inch is appropriately named the Bumblebee Bat. Add to their unique charm the ability to sleep upside down, that they are the only mammals able to fly, and bats are downright savvy. These fascinating creatures live everywhere humans live and yet manage to avoid us quite well.

While the bat continues to fascinate and often frighten some, it maintains its status as an asset to agriculture. They are also a non-invasive species and a source of natural pest control.
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October is the perfect time to recognize Bat Appreciation Month. 

These winged mammals are drawn to invasive insects like teenagers to a vampire movie. They devour them just as quickly as the made teens poured through the pages of the trilogy, too. And where would we be without the bats that pollinate our favorite fruits? Despite the bad rap they’ve received since 1897 when Bram Stoker wrote about the undead, bats demand respect.

Consider their ability to navigate with precision via echolocation. They are also one of the largest and longest living species on earth. Even the smallest at approximately one inch is appropriately named the Bumblebee Bat. Add to their unique charm the ability to sleep upside down, that they are the only mammals able to fly, and bats are downright savvy.  These fascinating creatures live everywhere humans live and yet manage to avoid us quite well.  

While the bat continues to fascinate and often frighten some, it maintains its status as an asset to agriculture. They are also a non-invasive species and a source of natural pest control.
October usually welcomes cooler temperatures, pumpkin spice lattes, and Halloween. While we welcome these classic fall favorites, we can also recognize October as Bat Appreciation Month. Bats are often represented in Halloween decorations to incite fear; however, these little creatures are quite harmless and extremely helpful for the environment.

Representing one of the most diverse groups of mammals, bats are members of the order Chiroptera meaning “hand-wing.” There are more than 1,300 species of bats around the world, and they can be found on every continent except Antarctica due to the freezing temperatures there. Bats enjoy a variety of foods, consuming anything from fruit, nectar, fish, insects, frogs, and mice. As the only mammal capable of sustaining flight, they are incredibly intelligent and social animals. Bats do everything other mammals do, just upside-down!
Happy Bat Appreciation Month! During this “spooky” month, let’s take some time to celebrate an important species that is vital for the health of our natural ecosystems.

Bats are infamous “creatures of the night” that are often feared by those that lack knowledge of their ecological benefits. These fascinating flying mammals serve our natural world by eating agricultural pests, pollinating plants, and ensuring the growth of fruits and veggies that feed people across the world!

According to Bat Conservation International, there are approximately 1,300 species of bats in the world, 47 of which live throughout North America. Unfortunately, most of the bat species found in the United States are considered endangered. Poaching, habitat destruction, and pesticides pose the greatest threats to bat survival. It’s important that humans find a way to coexist with bats to ensure the health of our natural ecosystems for future generations to enjoy.
Sadly, many bat species around the world are vulnerable or endangered due to factors ranging from loss and fragmentation of habitat, diminished food supply, destruction of roosts, disease and hunting or killing of bats.

In the UK, bat populations have declined considerably over the last century. Bats are still under threat from building and development work that affects roosts, loss of habitat, the severing of commuting routes by roads and threats in the home including cat attacks, flypaper and some chemical treatments of building materials. Other potential threats can include wind turbines and lighting if they are sited on key bat habitat on near roosts.
More than 200 bat species in 60 countries around the world are considered threatened (Critically Endangered, Endangered, or Vulnerable) by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Together, we can stabilize these populations and prevent extinctions.
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