Utah DWR to host bat viewing event at Mammoth Cave

Aug 22, 2023, 11:56 AM | Updated: 12:09 pm

Allen's Big Eared Bat (Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)

(Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)

KANE COUNTY, Utah Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources will host a free bat viewing to celebrate the 18 confirmed species of Utah bats. The exhibit will be held on Tuesday, August 29th from 7-10 p.m. at Mammoth Cave.

Bats, traditionally a Halloween-ish animal, are sometimes misunderstood as scary creatures. In reality, they’re the only mammals capable of true flight and they love to devour pesky mosquitos.

Townsend’s Big-Eared Bat is pictured during a survey. Its ears are typically measured at about half its body length. (Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)

“Bats are an incredibly important part of our ecosystem,” DWR Southern Region Outreach Manager Adam Kavalunas said. “We are excited to provide more information about these unique animals and hopefully the chance to see them up close at our event. Participants will also have the opportunity to explore an awesome part of the state.”

Biologists have been conducting surveys to learn more about the different species of bats. The surveys take place in southern Utah — as that’s where the greatest diversity of bat populations reside.

The surveys provide knowledge of the differences in species, where bats are located and how their populations fluctuate.

During the surveys, biologists use special nets to catch bats as they swoop down to eat insects.

The bats are quickly detangled and biologists gather information on their species and health before release. The DWR bat viewing will be a chance for members of the public to take a close look at the bats before they are released.

A unique species of bat, the Hoary Bat, is pictured in a biologist’s hands during a survey. (Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)

Participants won’t be able to handle the bats but will see them up close. N95 masks will be provided and required to wear when within six feet of the bats to help protect their health. It’s encouraged to bring a small flashlight or headlamp due to their habitat being very dark.

The event is free but participants are encouraged to register in advance on Eventbrite.



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Utah DWR to host bat viewing event at Mammoth Cave