SIA0222: Bat Cave, Bandelier National Monument

Photographer:Calvin J. Hamilton
Copyright:© 2003 Calvin J. Hamilton
Location:Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico

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In 1986 a colony of about 10,000 bats moved into this cave. They have returned every year up until 2002, but not in 2003. The fact that the bats did not return in 2003 has been disturbing and the reason is unknown. Sometimes people fear bats unnecessarily. They do not attack people nor get in their hair. Bats are wonderful creatures eating up to half their body weight each night in bugs such as mosquitoes, centipedes, and grasshoppers. Bats are a great help in controlling the bug population.

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