Zipping, zapping, and zooming through the darkening twilight sky, a silent hunter seeks it's prey.
It's prey is upwards of 1,000 mosquitoes tonight. Tomorrow will mean another 1,000 mosquitoes. Using echolocation, the nearly blind bat is able to search for and hunt the nuisance insects that we all despise. Receiving a bad rap throughout history, most people know more folklore than facts about bats. But the facts are-- bats are a very important link in the environmental food chain.
Due to a profound general loss of their native habitat, and diseases such as White Nosed Bat Syndrome spreading throughout populations, bats have never faced greater conservation challenges. Providing man-made habitats for these mammals throughout our properties, is one of many ways that we can help. Placing bat houses in our yards has many benefits and virtually no negative side effects. When a property owner places bat houses on their property, bats will be less likely to make homes and nests inside of structures such as attics and sheds.
With each and every bat possibly eating more than 1,000 mosquitoes and other nuisance pests in a single night, numerous bats in an area drastically reduces the populations of these pesky insects, eliminating the need for pesticides around our homes and gardens which can be harmful to our pets and to our drinking water.
The Allamakee County Conservation Board is currently constructing bat houses that will be available free of charge to homeowners and landowners for placement on their property. Anyone who is interested can contact the ACCB at (563) 580-2642 to receive a bat house.
Photo Source: USFWS