Where Are The Bats Going In The Winter?
I'm having fun with these topics that also loosely relate to Halloween today. I was just reading a fascinating article from the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, that was talking all about this week being Bat Week. The article made an interesting observation... They pointed out how it's funny how bats are so often associated with Halloween, because in Maine most bats are already snuggled in for a long winter's nap.
There are eight different species native to Maine. Three of them migrate south for the winter. But what do the other do? Since biologists have had to monitoring bat activity so much more because of white nose syndrome, they've been looking into various hibernacula around the state. That's the caves or abandoned mine type places where bats roost in winter.
Several years ago, they counted over 500 bats in the three Maine locations that bats gather. Last year, there were 27 bats counted and that was it. They have noticed a lot of animals moving into different places. A lot more in old house, rocky outcroppings, and places like that. but it's pretty obvious the devastation white nose syndrome is causing.
But thankfully populations are slowly starting to snap back. And noe that biologists have discovered some of these new spots they're hiding out in, they feel even more confident that we can bring the populations back up a bit.
So as you're thinking you're about to be attacked by a big old bat any minute this fine All Hallow's Eve, just remember, those furry little wingers are getting some much needed rest, and trying to recover from a long summer of trying to build back their entire species. So cut 'em some slack!