Native Bat Research/Bat Blitz
The Alabama Bat Working Group's annual Bat Blitz was held in summer of 2017 at Ruffner Mountain, and we must say that our first-ever Bat Blitz was a blast! But first, let's back up a little bit.
What is a Bat Blitz?
A Bat Blitz is an event, usually lasting a few days, in which bat biologists and enthusiasts descend upon a particular wilderness area to survey and identify bat species in the area and to monitor their population size. These numbers create a clearer picture as to how bat communities are composed and their structure. Prior to 2017's Bat Blitz, Ruffner had never been the site of such an event, so this was an exciting opportunity to learn more and gain new insight into the overall native bat community on the mountain. Additionally, new findings will aid in the continued study of white nose syndrome, a fungal disease which affects the muzzle and other parts of hibernating bats. Ruffner has fairly healthy populations of tri-colored (Perimyotis subflavus) and big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus), and many of both species were found at the 2017 Blitz. Lectures and presentations on native and non-native bats were held at the Nature Center.
To learn more about the Alabama Bat Working Group and the next Bat Blitz, visit https://alabamabatwg.wordpress.com.
See additional photos of the Bat Blitz below.