A little brown bat with fungal growth, associated with White-Nose Syndrome, on its muzzle. Credit: Larisa Bishop-Boros

Go batty for Bat Week in the Okanagan

Bat Week is all about raising awareness for the bats

As Halloween approaches, images of scary, blood-sucking bats become common place. This year, counter these myths and support bats by participating in International Bat Week.

Bat Week, from Oct. 24 to 31, is an opportunity to celebrate these amazing animals and their benefits, from eating insect pests to pollinating the agave plant used to make tequila. Take a moment to learn about the many ways bats contribute to our lives, and what you can do locally for bats, at www.batweek.org or through the BC Community Bat Program at www.bcbats.ca. Host a bat party, learn about bats by visiting the Peachland Visitor Centre bat colony, take a walk along the Peachland bat house interpretive trail, visit your local nature centre, or clean-up a wetland; there are many ways to participate.

“Bats help us – but now they need our help” says Paula Rodriguez de la Vega, Okanagan co-ordinator for the BC Community Bat Program. “The conservation of bats in B.C. has always been important since over half the species in this province are considered at risk. With the discovery of White-nose Syndrome in Washington State, bat conservation is more important than ever.”

White-nose Syndrome is a disease caused by an introduced fungus, first detected in North America in a cave in New York in 2006. Since it was discovered, it has spread to 33 states and 7 provinces in North America, decimating bat populations along the way. “Luckily, WNS is not yet in B.C.,” said Rodriguez de la Vega, “But we are preparing for its arrival by raising awareness about bats, working with landowners who have bats in buildings, enhancing bat habitat, and monitoring populations.”

READ MORE: Keeping track of bats in the Okanagan

Monitoring for WNS will continue this winter, with Community Bat Programs requesting reports of dead bats or sightings of winter bat activity starting November 1. You can report sightings at www.bcbats.ca, okanagan@bcbats.ca, or 1-855-922-2287 ext.13.

In partnership with the BC Ministry of Environment, and funded by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, Habitat Stewardship Program, and the South Okanagan Conservation Fund, the BC Community Bat Program – Okanagan Region provides information about bats in buildings, conducts site visits to advise landowners on managing bats in buildings, coordinates the annual bat count, and offers educational programs on bats.


edit@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

WATCH: $2,600 buzz cut for Vernon man

Richard Rolke raises nearly $3K for CMHA’s crisis line with fund ‘razor’

‘We are not seeking a handout,’ Enderby drive-in owner says

Touched by fundraising efforts, Starlight says show support by coming to the movies instead

$113K boost for North Okanagan charities on COVID-19 frontline

Partnership between United Way and Community Foundation supports organizations from Vernon to Revelstoke

Highway 97 near Falkland reopens after crash

A motor vehicle incident on Douglas Lake Road put the brakes on traffic

WATCH: New home for Vernon family

Single mom, two kids new residents of Habitat for Humanity’s first completed project in Vernon

Mission prison COVID-19 outbreak ends, 9 new cases in B.C.

New positive test at Port Coquitlam care home

Flood watch for Salmon River upgraded as high temperatures, rain forecast

Shuswap Emergency Program warns residents to prepare now for possible extreme flooding

Man who bound, murdered Vancouver Island teen still a risk to public: parole board

Kimberly Proctor’s killer is still ‘mismanaging emotions,’ has had ‘temper tantrums’

VIDEO: Humpback whales put on quite a show

The ‘playful’ pod lingered by a Campbell River tour operator’s boat for quite some time

RCMP request public’s help in locating missing Salmon Arm man

Ken Derkach is a familiar face to many, one of the city’s residents who is without a home

Booze on Kelowna beaches? Mayor says ‘not at the moment’

Mayor Colin Basran says alcohol in public spaces is not on council’s radar right now — but that could change

Getting hitched at historic B.C. gold rush town still on table during COVID-19 pandemic

Micro-weddings, online visits, offered at Barkerville Historic Town and Park

VIDEO: Police look for suspect seen tripping elderly woman in Burnaby

The elderly woman was walking near the SkyTrain station when she was randomly tripped

Drunk man on a dirt bike and prohibited drivers without insurance keep Shuswap RCMP busy

Other calls resulted in excessive speed tickets and the arrests of two prohibited drivers

Most Read