Citizen-science initiative needs volunteers to count B.C. bats

Volunteer assistance is needed to count bats at local roost sites around B.C.

The BC Community Bat Program is asking for volunteers to help endangered wildlife, such as the Little Brown Bat, with a citizen-science initiative.

Volunteer assistance is needed to count bats at local roost sites around B.C.

“The counts are a wonderful way for people to get involved in collecting important scientific information, as well as learn about bat behaviour” said biologist Ella Braden, co-ordinator of the Okanagan Community Bat Program, in a news release.

READ MORE: Penticton students go to bat for bats

In 2018, the annual bat count collected baseline data on bat populations at 214 sites across the province, and hope to find more sites for 2019. The count data helps bat biologists understand bat distribution and normal variation in colony sizes before the devastating White-nose Syndrome affects bats in the province.

White-nose syndrome is an introduced fungal disease, fatal for bats but not for other animals or humans. Not yet identified in B.C., the disease continues to spread in Washington State. Results from the bat count may help prioritize areas in B.C. for research into treatment options and recovery actions.

READ MORE: Peachland researchers warn public to be on alert for dead bats

Volunteers wait outside a known roost site, such as a bat-house, barn, bridge or attic, and count bats as they fly out at twilight. They record the final number along with basic information on weather conditions. Ideally, one to two counts are done between June 1 and 21 before pups are born, and one to two more between July 11 and Aug. 5 when pups are flying.

“We know relatively little about bats in B.C., including basic information on population numbers,” said Braden. “This information is more valuable than ever, particularly if it is collected annually. If people want to get involved but don’t have a roost site on their property, we will try to match them with a roost site nearby.”

The BC Community Bat Program provides information for people dealing with bat issues on their property or who have questions about how to attract bats. To find out more about bat counts or white-nose syndrome, to report a dead bat, or to get assistance dealing with bat issues, visit www.bcbats.ca or call 1-855-9BC-BATS ext. 13.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Play revolves around teenagers in thought-provoking dialect

Chemainus Theatre’s I & You focuses on the development of an unlikely friendship

Woman thought she’d die trapped in her backyard shed

Jessica McCauley kept her cool and worked her way out

Duncan Swin Team makes history at junior nationals

In the history of the Duncan Swim Team, fewer than 30 swimmers… Continue reading

Talking about dementia is different when your own family is involved

Wilkinson shares a special story about his own father

VIDEO: Facebook rolls out tool to block off-Facebook data gathering

CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the “clear history” feature more than a year ago

Vancouver Island rainbow crosswalk covered in mysterious black substance

Black substance spilled intentionally near Qualicum Beach school and difficult to remove

RCMP originally planned to arrest Meng Wanzhou on plane, defence lawyers say

The allegations have not been proven in court. Meng was arrested Dec. 1 at Vancouver airport at the behest of the U.S.

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Ethics commissioner ready to testify on Trudeau, SNC-Lavalin: NDP critic

A new poll suggests the report hasn’t so far hurt the Liberals’ chances of re-election this fall

Inflation hits Bank of Canada 2% target for second straight month

Prices showed strength in other areas, including an 18.9 per cent increase in the cost of fresh vegetables

Vancouver Island RCMP hunt for man after pair of indecent exposure incidents

Elderly Qualicum Beach woman grabbed by man who had been masturbating in the woods

Pile of wood mulch ‘spontaneously combusts’ at Vancouver Island industrial site

Business owner thanks fire department for quick response

Most Read