BC’s bats need our help, says the BC Community Bat Program, and what better time to promote awareness of interesting and useful creatures than on Halloween, when images of them abound.
October 24-31 is International Bat Week, which is dedicated to appreciating all the ways these animals benefit their environment, including eating insects, pollinating flowers, and spreading seeds and nutrients.
READ MORE: British Columbia’s bats are not spreading COVID-19, Project Kootenay Bat says
“Bats in British Columbia help control agricultural and forest pests, as well as mosquitoes in our backyards, but now bats need our help,” said Mandy Kellner, BC Community Bat Program Coordinator. .
“The conservation of bats in British Columbia has always been important, as more than half of the species in this province are considered to be at risk. With the continued spread of white-nose syndrome in Washington state, bat conservation is more important than ever as we expect to see impacts in British Columbia in the near future. “
Not only does Bat Week coincide with the Halloween season, which makes it a good time to counter the outlook for bats as spooky creatures, but it’s also the time of year when they migrate to bats. warmer climates in search of insects to eat.
Because this is the time of year when bats tend to leave our neighborhoods, it’s a good time to do some renovations if you have to delay them due to the presence of bats.
The BC Community Bat Program says it’s also a time to clean and repair bat boxes, or do bat-friendly exclusion work without disturbing or harming bats.
READ MORE: Kootenay residents invited to participate in bat count
Another important thing for the last few months of the year is to report any bats you see in the winter. Community bat programs will request reports of dead bats or observations of winter bat activity to continue monitoring white-nose syndrome.
The Kootenay Community Bat Program is a partner of the British Columbia Ministry of Environment and is funded by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, the Forest Enhancement Society of BC, the Habitat Stewardship Program, the Columbia Basin Trust and the Kootenay Conservation Program .
With this support, they are able to provide information and promote local stewardship and citizen science.
On their website, bcbats.ca has a wealth of information on how to report winter bat sightings, set up and maintain a bat box, or safely remove them from your home. , as well as a lot of other information about the animals themselves and all the means. they can be useful to have around.
You can also find out more about International Bat Week at www.batweek.org