Friday, April 27, 2012

Got Bats?

By Alyssa Bennett
VT Fish and Wildlife Technician

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department (VFWD) needs help locating summer “house bat” colonies around the state. Vermont’s little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) and the big brown bat (Eptesicus fuscus) commonly live in buildings such as attics, barns, and sheds from mid-April to October.

Vermont’s hibernating bat populations have been devastated by White-nose Syndrome (WNS), a disease caused by the cold-loving fungus Geomyces destructans. In just a few short years, WNS has left the once common little brown bat nearly extinct. Now listed as endangered in Vermont, little brown bats can eat half their weight in insects each night and are a vital part of our ecosystem.

You can help by document “house bat” colonies by filling out VFWD's online reporting form, or by calling state wildlife technician Alyssa Bennett at (802) 786-0098.


You can learn even more about bats by volunteering as a bat counter. Bats routinely emerge at dusk on warm, clear summer nights making them easy to count once you find their exit. Enjoy this summer pastime with family and friends, while gathering valuable scientific data. Find all the information on the web here or contact Bennett at (802) 786-0098.

Monitoring summer activity around the state will help us make informed decisions regarding the conservation and recovery of Vermont’s bats. Learn more about bats and WNS

Above images provided by Vermont Fish and Wildlife.

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