National Wildlife Federation's Bat Guide

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  • 1. Night Friends- American Bats On-line Activity Guide The National Wildlife Federation™ and Bat Conservation International are working with the U.S. Postal Service to promote the American Bats Stamps as a tool to educate and inspire Americans about the beauty of our nations wildlife and urgent need to conserve it. BAT CONSERVATION INTERNATIONAL You can purchase stamps by calling 1-800-STAMP24 or online at www.usps.com
  • 2. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS Background Origins and Relatives Did you know that the world’s smallest mammal, the bumblebee bat, weighs less than a penny? Bats play a vital role in the health of our natural world, and are fascinating creatures. They are a group of mammals that belong to the group, “Chiroptera,” which means hand-wing. All living bat species fit into one of two sub-groups, the Microchiroptera or the Megachiroptera. Members of the latter group are often called “flying foxes” because of their fox-like faces. They are found only in the Old World tropics, while the Microchiroptera, which are highly varied in appearance, occur worldwide. Diversity and Distribution The more than 1,000 species of bats make up approximately 25 percent of all mammal species, more than any other mammal group except rodents, and they are found everywhere in the world AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 1www.nwf.org
  • 3. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION except in the most extreme desert and polar regions. Some 40 species live in the United States and Canada, but the majority inhabit tropical forests where, in total number of species, they sometimes outnumber all other mammals combined. Bats come in an amazing A bat emits a high-frequency sound, variety of sizes and appear- which hits an object and bounces ances. While the bumblebee back to the bat, telling it how far bat is at one extreme, some away the object (prey) is. flying foxes of the Old World tropics have wingspans of up to six feet. The big-eyed, winsome intricate facial features that total darkness they can detect expressions of flying foxes often become more fascinating when obstacles as fine as a human surprise people who would their sophisticated role in navi- hair. The sophistication of never have thought that a bat gation is explored. these unique echolocation could be cute. Some bats have systems surpasses current scien- long angora-like fur, ranging in tific understanding and has Navigation and Migration been estimated to be billions of color from bright red-brown or Like dolphins, most bats times more efficient than any yellow to jet black or white. communicate and navigate similar system developed by One species is furless, and with high-frequency sounds, humans. In addition, bats are another even has pink wings which they bounce off of not blind and many have excel- and ears. A few are so brightly objects to determine where and lent vision. patterned that they are known how far away they are. Using as butterfly bats. Others have sound alone, bats can “see” In temperate regions, cold enormous ears, nose leaves, and everything but color, and in winters and the subsequent lack of insect prey force bats to migrate or hibernate. Most travel fewer than 300 miles to find a suitable cave or aban- doned mine, where they remain for up to six months or more, surviving solely on stored fat reserves. However,2 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 4. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATSseveral species are long-distance nating sites to warmer roosts, attack humans, and they livemigrators, traveling from as far where they form nursery only in Latin America. Withnorth as Canada to the Gulf colonies. Birth occurs approxi- the exception of three speciesstates or Mexico for the winter. mately a month and a half to of nectar-feeding bats that liveA few species can survive short- two months later. Young bats along the Mexican border ofterm exposure to sub-freezing grow rapidly, often learning to Arizona and Texas, all bats intemperatures, enabling them to fly within three weeks. While the United States and Canadaoverwinter in crevices in cliff they are being reared, males are insectivorous.faces or inside the outer wallsof buildings. Bats can be found roosting in a wide range of shelters, although they are bestCourtship and known for living inReproduction caves. TropicalMost bats that live species occupy anin temperate even wider range ofregions, such as the roost sites thanUnited States and temperate species.Canada, mate in the For example,fall just before entering some makehibernation. Ovulation tent-like roostsand fertilization (through by bitingsperm that have been dormant Proportion of bat species through thein the female reproductive tract with each kind of bat diet. midribs of large leaves, and several species have suction discs on their and non-reproductive females wings and feet that enable often segregate into separate them to live in the slick-walled Young bats grow groups called bachelor colonies. cavities formed by unfurling rapidly, often leaves, such as those of the learning to fly within Although 70 percent of bats eat banana plant. Others live in insects, many tropical species animal burrows, flowers, three weeks. feed exclusively on fruit or termite nests, and even in large nectar. A few are carnivorous, tropical spider webs. Despite hunting small vertebrates such the wide variety of roosts usedsince the previous fall) occur in as fish, frogs, mice, and birds. by bats, many species havethe spring as females emerge Despite their notoriety, there adapted to living in roosts offrom hibernation. Pregnant are only three species of only one or a few types andfemales then move from hiber- vampire bats, they do not cannot survive anywhere else. AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 3www.nwf.org
  • 5. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION Why Should I Care species. Each of these about Bats? species of bats Worldwide, bats play essential supports plants that roles in keeping populations of are crucial to entire night-flying insects in balance. ecosystems. Many Just one bat can catch hundreds plants bloom at of insects in an hour, and large night, using unique odors and special flower shapes that attract bats. The famous baobab tree of Seeds dropped the eastern African savannas is a good by bats can account example. Only bats can for up to 95 percent approach from below in a of forest regrowth manner likely to contact the flower’s reproductive organs on cleared land. and achieve pollination. provide more than 450 Wild varieties of many of the economically important prod- world’s most economically ucts, valued in the hundreds of colonies catch tons of insects valuable crop plants also rely millions of dollars annually. nightly, including beetle and on bats for survival. Some of The value of tropical bats in moth species that cost Amer- the better-known commercial reforestation alone is enor- ican farmers and foresters products include fruits such as mous. Seeds dropped by bats billions of dollars annually, not bananas, breadfruit, avocados, can account for up to 95 to mention mosquitoes in our dates, figs, peaches, and percent of forest regrowth on backyards. In a single mid- mangoes. Others include cleared land. Performing this summer night, the 20 million cloves, cashews, carob, balsa essential role puts these bats free-tailed bats from Bracken wood, and even tequila. among the most important Cave in central Texas eat more seed-dispersing animals of both than 200 tons of insects! We already know that more the Old and New World than 300 plant species in the tropics. Throughout the tropics, the Old World tropics alone rely Excerpted with permission from “The World seed dispersal and pollination on the pollinating and seed of Bats’’ in America’s Neighborhood Bats activities of fruit- and nectar- dispersal services of bats, and by Merlin Tuttle, Copyright © 1988. Courtesy of the University of Texas Press. eating bats are vital to the additional bat-plant relation- survival of rain forests, with ships are constantly being some bats acting as “keystone’’ discovered. These plants4 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 6. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATSFeatured Bats another gleaner that feeds and to migrate. Unlike most mostly from the ground, unlike bats, red bats often give birth to the majority of North American twins and can have litters of upMacrotus californicus, bats, which capture flying prey. to five young, though three isCalifornia leaf-nosed bat With its huge ears, it can detect average. In the fall they perform The Cali- insects simply by listening for long-distance migrations, travel- fornia leaf- footsteps, and it can respond ling the same routes along the nosed bat is accurately to a split-second Atlantic seaboard as many small the only bat sound from up to 16 feet away. birds do. in the United Its most common prey include States to have Euderma maculatum, crickets, beetles, grasshoppers,both large ears and a nose leaf. It spotted bat and even scorpions. Pallid batsis also one of the most acrobatic The roost in rock crevices, buildings,fliers. This bat is a “gleaner,” spotted bat and bridges in arid regions.which means it is one of the few is one of They are found from MexicoU.S. bats that swoops down to America’s and the southwestern Unitedcapture insect prey straight from most States north through Oregon,the ground or plants rather than striking Washington, and westernin flight. It typically hunts mammals. Its long, silky fur is Canada.within a few feet of the ground, snow white beneath and jetusing its superior eyesight and Lasiurus black above, with large whitehearing to search for insects such borealis, spots on its shoulders andas crickets, grasshoppers, beetles, red bat rump. Its translucent pink ears,and sphinx moths. California Red bats nearly as long as its body, areleaf-nosed bats do not hibernate, are North the largest of any bat found innor do they migrate. They can America’s the United States, and it hasbe found in desert scrub habitats most abundant “tree bats.” pink wings to match! Initiallyin the Colorado River valley in They are found east of the thought to be extremely rare,southern California, Nevada, Rocky Mountains from central the spotted bat is now known toand Arizona, and throughout Canada to central Florida wher- live from southwestern Canada,western Mexico. ever there are trees. Red bats south through the western roost in tree foliage, where their United States to northernAntrozous pallidus, rusty red color makes them look Mexico. It is hard to findpallid bat like dead leaves. They are because it roosts high up in The pallid perfectly camouflaged as they cliff-face crevices and emerges to bat has hang from a single foot with feed late at night. Moths that large ears, their furry tails curled around are caught high above the but no nose them. Red bats are solitary, ground are its favorite prey. leaf. It is coming together only to mate AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 5www.nwf.org
  • 7. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION ACTIVITY investigating bat adaptations 1 Summary: Background piper fruits, but some flying Students investigate adaptations foxes are generalists that eat Did you ever stop to think what many sizes and kinds of fruit as that increase a bat’s chance of the world would be like if all well as nectar. finding food and surviving in a animals suddenly tried to eat particular habitat. just one kind of food? What if Some bats that catch insects Grade Level: they all decided to eat just grass? have adaptations for hunting 3-6 The answer is simple. They certain kinds of prey or for Time: soon would run out of grass and capturing them in certain starve to death. Because animals places. Free-tailed bats are like two activity periods eat a wide variety of foods, they little jet airplanes, using their Subject: compete less, allowing many long, narrow wings and far- science different species of animals to reaching echolocation (sonar Skills: live in the same habitat and systems) for chasing moths high observation, comparison, maintain healthy ecosystems. up in the sky. California leaf- hypothesizing nosed bats are more like heli- Learning Objectives: Most of the world’s bats eat copters, relying on short, broad Students will be able to: insects, and in areas with cold wings to snatch crickets and ✔ List several different foods winters, that is all they eat. other insects from plants or the that bats eat. Many tropical bats eat fruit and ground. They can use their ✔ Describe anatomical features nectar, and a few are carnivores extra-large eyes and ears to find that lend themselves to that eat other animals, including insects without even using particular bat diets. rats and mice, small birds, frogs, echolocation. Big brown bats ✔ Analyze bat features to accu- lizards, or even fish. Only three have especially strong jaws and rately predict their diets. out of more than 1,000 species teeth for chewing hard beetles. of bats drink blood. Pipistrelles have tiny teeth for Materials: eating gnats and mosquitoes, ✔ Bats Adapt for Food cards Each species of bat is adapted and gray myotis have large feet (one set of six cards for each for the food it eats. Some bats for catching mayflies as they group) specialize in eating just one or a hatch from a pond’s surface. ✔ Bat Food Clues at the end of few kinds of food, but others the lesson, paper for students are generalists that eat a wide Most experienced bat scientists to write answers variety of foods. Long-nosed can guess what a bat eats by bats have noses of varied lengths looking closely at its adapta- and widths that match the sizes tions. Long, narrow wings or and shapes of the flowers from large tail membranes are usually which they drink nectar. adaptations for catching insects, Carollia fruit bats are adapted to but if the bat also has huge feet feeding almost entirely on small and claws, it probably eats fish.6 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 8. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATSJust having large, but not overly specialists, such as the huge- fact cards among its memberslarge, feet would indicate a bat footed fishing bats, or long- so that every student canthat catches insects from pond nosed nectar bats, live only in become an expert on one ofsurfaces. If a bat is large and has tropical areas where climates the bat eating habits. (Twostrong jaws, long canine teeth, and food sources are students can share a singleand a large tail membrane, it is the most predictable. card in groups having moreprobably a carnivore, adapted Bats that live in than six students.)both to eating meat and to northern climates,turning quickly while chasing where changes are 3. Ask students to take out aprey. If it has strong jaws and frequent and piece of paper and number itlong canine teeth, but has only unpredictable, from one to twelve down thea very small tail membrane, it is are all insect-eaters left-hand side. Ask questionsa fruit bat that does not need to that seldom by reading the “Bat Foodchase prey, but is adapted for specialize on Clues” to the class one at abiting into tough-skinned fruit any one time.to squeeze the juice out. insect type.Both insect-eating and In these 4. Give each group a minute ormeat-eating bats always places, it is rare to find two to discuss each givenhave long tails or tail a bat with highly specialized clue, and decide what type ofmembranes, but wings, feet, or ears. bat it is (for example, insect-meat-eaters are eating, fruit-eating, etc.).the largest and have thestrongest jaws. Preparation 5. After all Bat Food Clues are given and students haveSpecial adaptations allow bats to Make enough copies of the Bats written their answers, go backfind and eat certain kinds of Adapt for Food cards to through the ’ Bat Food Clues’food with little or no competi- distribute one complete set to and lead the class intion from other species. This is each group. You may want to discussing the answers. Bonusvery successful as long as their laminate the cards for durability. questions after each Bat Foodunique food type is abundant, Clue can be used to stimulatebut such specialization is risky, additional discussion. Eachbecause the kinds of prey, fruit, Procedure group’s expert on each feedingor flowers a bat eats might die 1. Divide your class into groups type can be called upon toout, leaving the bat to starve. of six or more students each. help lead discussions.Animals that eat a variety offoods can switch types if one 2. Distribute one complete setdisappears, but they cannot of Food Cards to each group.compete well with specialized Tell the group to divide theanimals for any one food. Most AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 7www.nwf.org
  • 9. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION Extensions Assessment ✔ Challenge students to investi- ✔ Have students write letters to gate other animals that have advertisers they select, food habits similar to bats. explaining why they think a For example, some birds bat would make the perfect snatch insects out of the air, mascot for their product. while others pick them from Students could apply their foliage. How do the habits and knowledge of bat characteris- habitats of these birds compare tics and make their own with those of bats? What about connections to products. fruit-eating birds? Nectar- For example, bats can fold eating birds? Fish-eating birds? their wings around them to Are there any other animals protect them from the that eat blood? Students can elements, so present their results in poster they’d make or report format. a great mascot ✔ There have been many other for umbrellas or rain- bats featured on stamps from coats. Or bats could adver- all countries and many other tise insect repellent since they backyard wildlife species eat mosquitoes. Or maybe featured on U.S. stamps. See aircraft manufacturers, since how many you can find to bats use radar. Sports teams? start your collection. Visit Night vision goggles? the American Philatelic ✔ Have students create a Society’s website, Halloween card with a bat on www.stamps.org/kids/kid_ it to mail to their grandpar- StampFun.htm, for more ents or friends. Inside, they information on these stamps, could include a “Did You stamp collecting, and Know?” section listing inter- National Stamp Collecting esting facts they learned Month (October, 2002). about bats. Excerpted with permission from “Discover Bats!’’ a multi-media activity guide by Bat Conservation International, Copyright © 1998.8 | WHERE IN THE WORLD IS THE ARCTIC? www.nwf.org
  • 10. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS ACTIVITY teacher REFERENCE SHEET 1 Bat Food Clues1.WHO AM I? 4.WHO AM I?Clue: My toes and claws are exceptionally long, Clue: I fly fast over quiet water, searching for tinyand the sides of my toes and claws are flat. moving objects. My fur is oily.Bonus Questions: Bonus Questions:What is the advantage of having long toes and What is the advantage of flying over calm water?claws? What is the advantage of having flattened What is the advantage of oily fur?toes and claws? Answers:Answers: 4. I am a fish-eating bat. To easily detect tiny fin1. I am a fish-eating bat. Can reach into water tips using echolocation. To shed water, keep batwithout submerging body. To glide easily fur dry, and avoid getting cold.through water. 5.WHO AM I?2.WHO AM I? Clue: My short, broad wings and my large tailClue: My legs are extra strong and my kidneys membrane allow me to dart in and out ofwork quickly so I can eliminate water as fast as branches.I eat. Bonus Questions:Bonus Questions: What is the advantage of being able to dart in andHow do fast-working kidneys help a blood-eating out of branches? What is the advantage of being ablebat? What is the advantage of extra strong legs? to catch insects on the ground or in bushes?Answers: Answers:2. I am a blood-eating bat.To get rid of the water, 5. I am an insect-eating bat that catches prey onso the bat wont be too heavy to fly. To walk on the ground or on plants. To avoid obstacles andthe ground while stalking large prey or to jump catch prey. To avoid competing for food withaway quickly if the prey wakes. other bats that feed in the open.3.WHO AM I? 6.WHO AM I?Clue: I am a large, strong bat with large ears and Clue: I have sharp teeth and strong jaws that canbroad wings. cut or crush big meals, I also have a big tailBonus Questions: membrane.Why does a carnivorous bat need big ears? What is Bonus Questions:the advantage of having broad wings? What is the advantage of having sharp teeth andAnswers: strong jaws? What is the advantage of a big tail3. I am a meat-eating bat. To listen to and find membrane?prey. To better lift heavy prey. Answers: 6. I am a meat-eating bat. To quckily kill and cut up large prey and break bones. To maneuver better when chasing prey. AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 9
  • 11. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION ACTIVITY teacher REFERENCE SHEET 1 Bat Food Clues 7.WHO AM I? 10.WHO AM I? Clue: My teeth are small, except for my front Clue: My tongue is long and my wings allow me teeth, which are sharp and can cut like a razor. to hover. My nose can detect heat. Bonus Questions: Bonus Questions: Why does this bat need to hover in flight? What is Why are razor-sharp teeth important? What is the the value of a long tongue? advantage of a heat-sensitive nose? Answers: Answers: 10. I am a nectar-eating bat. To visit flowers 7. I am a blood-eating bat. To make quick, rapidly without landing, therefore staying safe painless cuts. To find areas on prey that are rich from predators. To reach deep in to flowers and in blood. lap up nectar. 8.WHO AM I? 11.WHO AM I? Clue: I have sophisticated echolocation abilities; Clue: My teeth are flat and my jaws are strong so long, narrow wings; and small ears. I can squeeze juice from my food. Bonus Questions: Bonus Questions: Why do bats have echolocation as well as good Why does this bat discard as much pulp as possible? eyesight? What advantages do long, narrow wings What is the advantage of having flat teeth? have? Answers: Answers: 11. I am a fruit-eating bat. To get the most nutri- 8. I am an insect-eating bat that catches prey in tious part of the fruit without carrying extra the air. To pursue prey on the darkest nights and weight. To squeeze out juice without cutting up to roost in deep, dark caves where they are safe the pulp. from predators. To chase fast-flying insects and travel far. 12.WHO AM I? Clue: My nose is long and narrow and my teeth 9.WHO AM I? are very small. Clue: I can smell my food from a long way off Bonus Questions: and I dont have to echolocate. What is the advantage of small teeth? What is the Bonus Questions: advantage of a long, narrow nose? Why do many of these bats not need to echolocate? Answers: Why is a good sense of smell important? 12. I am a nectar-eating bat. Nectar doesnt need Answers: to be chewed, so heavy teeth arent needed. To 9. I am a fruit-eating bat. They dont live in caves reach deep into long, narrow flowers. and echolocaiton isnt necessary for finding fruit. To smell ripe fruits, because color cant be seen in the dark.10 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 12. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS ACTIVITY WORKSHEET 1 Bats Adapt for Food CardsMeat-Eating Bat Fish-Eating BatCarnivore (CAR-nih-vore) Piscivore (PISK-kah-vore) Body: Larger than average size; long legs and enormous feet; long, sharp, hooked claws; toes flat for knifing through water; oily fur that sheds water to keep dry.Body: Large size for capturing and carryingoff other animals. Head: Strong jaws for killing and chewing fish; special echolocation ability to detect ripples orHead: Strong jaws for killing prey; large ears help fins on water surface.identify and locate a mouses footsteps or the call ofa frog. Wings: Narrow and long for flying fast over water.Wings: Broad, with up to three-foot wingspan; large Teeth: Sharp (similar to insectivores), for choppingtail membrane for maneuvering rapidly. and grinding fish.Teeth: Sharp molars and long canines for choppingflesh and crushing bones. AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 11 www.nwf.org
  • 13. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION ACTIVITY WORKSHEET 1 Bats Adapt for Food Cards Blood-Eating Bat Insect-Eating Bat Sanguivore (SAN-gua-vore) Insectivore (in-SECK-tih-vore) Body: Strong legs for walking on ground or climbing Body: Many body shapes, all small. on prey and for jumping into flight when full of blood. Head: Many kinds of faces and ears that aid Head: Heat-sensitive nose helps find blood vessels echolocation and hearing while hunting for closest to prey’s skin surface; short pug muzzle makes insects. biting easier. Wings: Insectivores that catch insects on the Wings: Broad and short; strong enough to carry ground or on plants (gleaning insectivores) have heavy food loads with a full stomach. broad, short wings and large tail membranes for Teeth: Tiny molars; incisors forming large, razor-sharp darting in and out of branches or hovering close blades for slicing preys skin; grooved tongue for lapping to the ground. Insectivores that chase insects in blood; special saliva keeps blood from clotting so bat the air while flying (aerial insectivores) have longer, can keep drinking. narrower wings and often have smaller ears for streamlining; some use their tail membrane to help Special: Kidneys allow bat to urinate as fast as it catch prey. eats to lighten the load before flying home Teeth: Sharp, for grinding and chopping tough insect bodies.12 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 14. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS ACTIVITY WORKSHEET 1 Bats Adapt for Food CardsFruit-Eating Bat Nectar-Eating BatFrugivore (FROO-gah-vore) Nectarivore (NECT-ter-ah-vore)Body: Often large with bright colors; most have notail and little or no tail membrane. Body: Small bodyHead: Medium to short snouts; keen nose forsmelling ripe fruit; strong jaws for biting fruit; large eyes Head: Long, slender snout fits perfectly into flowers;with excellent vision; many dont echolocate. long, delicate jaw; grooved lower lip and rough, scaly tongue to catch nectar; excellent vision; andWings: Wide and short for carrying heavy fruits; small sense of smell.tail membrane. Wings: Short and wide with long wingtips forTeeth: Wide, flat grinding teeth and strong jaws for hovering above flowers.crushing fruit-separates juice and spits out pulp; somehave grooved teeth to more easily collect juice. Teeth: Small; not used much for chewing due to liquid diet. AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 13 www.nwf.org
  • 15. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION ACTIVITY bats:maligned or malicious? 2 Summary: Background drink blood? Only three out of Students explore their views the more than 1,000 species of Humans tend to find some bats are actually ’ vampire of a threatened bat and animals naturally compelling, bats,’ and these species all live present their findings. while others are not so only in Latin America. Grade Levels: appealing. For example, many Virtually all U.S. bats are 3-8; K-2 of us would much rather see insect-eaters (There are a few Time: moose, loons, and rabbits on a bats in the Southwest that live Two or more class periods, jaunt in the woods than snakes, on nectar and a few species eat depending on the presentations. spiders, and bats. Because of fish). Do bats carry disease? the way these animals have Like all animals, bats can carry Subjects: been portrayed in myths, folk- science, reading, presentation, diseases. Yet public-health lore, books, and movies, many worries about bats are exagger- social studies of us are biased towards cute, ated. The probability of Skills: furry animals, even though all catching a disease from a bat is analysis, application, classifica- species play important roles in far less than the risk of being tion, comparison, description, their ecosystems. Although struck by lightning. For anyone evaluation, research, synthesis some of our responses to who simply leaves bats alone, certain wildlife help protect us and never attempts to handle Learning Objectives: from danger, logic does not them, they are invaluable allies Students will be able to: always guide our beliefs and that need not be feared. ✔ Describe several views behaviors. Furthermore, we people hold about bats. However, as with other wild tend to overlook the benefits animals, those that can be ✔ Identify misconceptions some species offer humans and caught are most likely to be about a threatened species. other wildlife. For example, sick, and, because these may ✔ Reflect on changes in their spiders and bats help control ’ bite in self-defense, and can attitudes about wildlife. nuisance’ insects and provide transmit potentially dangerous ✔ Share natural history and food for other animals. Many diseases, they never should be conservation knowledge about bats. snakes control some rodent handled. populations. Yet, many of our Materials: beliefs about animals are not Most of our fears about wildlife ✔ Copies of “Threatened:The based on scientific facts. are generated from some level Indiana Bat” readings of primal fear based simply on (whichever one is more Beneficial Bats the unknown. Bats are small, appropriate for your Bats often suffer from negative, mysterious creatures of the students’ reading level). Each Halloween-like associations. student will need one night that spend time in caves Many people think of Dracula, reading. and other dark places. Interest- blood-sucking fangs, disease, or ✔ Craft materials (optional) ingly, in the tropics, where bats tangled in the hair. Are ✔ Props (optional) many of the bats are much these perceptions fair? Do bats14 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 16. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATSlarger and more easily seen in Procedure two versions are provided; picktheir habitats, they are not the version with the readingfeared. 1. Tell your students that they level most appropriate for your will be learning about bats. students.) Another option is toDue to killing stemming from For fun, ask them to practice have students conduct thecarelessness or the fear of bats, making a special sound research themselves. Mentionand continued habitat loss, bat made by a bat called the that Indiana bats are threat-populations have suffered. Bats “body buzz.’’ The body ened species in the Unitedreproduce slowly, typically buzz is a low sound bats States. There are also manyrearing only one young per make when they are resting other species of batsyear, making population and seem contented before throughout North America.recovery a slow process. Instead they go to sleep. The bat’s 5. Give students time to readof spreading myths, we should whole body vibrates. about bats.consider bats’ real roles in 2. What do your students 6. If possible, head outside toecosystems. Bats are important know about bats, important evaluate your schoolto the natural world. Feeding animals throughout North grounds or a local area asat night, they catch billions of America? Instruct students habitat for bats. Is there ainsects. Nature’s bug-zappers to create a concept map for forest nearby? Are there anyare wonderfully efficient, bats. A concept map is a caves or streamside treescatching as many as 600 diagram representing where bats could roost andmosquitoes an hour. Bats also thoughts and ideas associ- feed? Are there trees witheat a number of crop pests, ated with a certain subject, peeling bark for bats to hidehelping farmers and reducing in this case a bat. (See under?the need for harmful pesticides. diagram for an example, 7. Back in the classroom,Many tropical bats feed on done for wolves.) Encourage divide the class into smallfruit or nectar and in the students to record their own groups of two to threeprocess pollinate plants and ideas and then share with students. Explain that eachdisperse seeds, helping to their group; there are no group will be responsibleregenerate the forest. Any right or wrong answers. for designing and sharing anumber of familiar plants 3. Review the concept maps as presentation about bats.depend on bats, including figs, a class and discuss any 8. Give students the followingbananas, avocados, cloves, and commonalities. How are guidelines for their presen-cashews. bats generally perceived by the tations. The presentations class? In a positive light? A might be in the form of a negative light? Why? newscast (perhaps inter- 4. Distribute copies of ’ viewing a biologist), skit, Threatened: The Indiana radio show, documentary, Bat’ to each student. (Note: song, poster, mural, AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 15www.nwf.org
  • 17. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION diorama, or other medium. additional research mate- Modifications for The final presentation rials available, particularly Younger Students should last roughly five on bat pollination if (Grades K-2) minutes. In addition to possible. Also, consider being fun and creative, the having props available, or For younger students, intro- presentations should also put students in charge of duce the book Stellaluna, by convey key, accurate infor- finding what they need for Janell Cannon. This delightful mation about bats. One their presentations. If time story portrays bats in a posi- important role of the pres- allows, this can develop tive light, following the antics entation is to educate into a more involved of the young bat Stellaluna as people about myths they project taking several class she spends time with a family may have heard about bats. periods. of birds and discovers her true For example, are bats really 11. Presentation time! Invite identity. blood suckers? What kinds of student groups to deliver benefits do bats provide to their presentations to the Modifications for people and ecosystems? rest of the class. After each (Grades 5-8) 9. Let students know they will presentation, review the be evaluated on their criteria listed on the board Older students can research presentations. As a class, as a class and evaluate the different species of bats on develop a list of criteria for presentation. Remind their own, instead of relying on judging the presentations. students of the difference the readings provided. They Record the ideas on the between constructive and could conduct comparisons board. Encourage students destructive criticism. among different kinds of bats, to think about what they Encourage students to their diets, habitat require- believe makes a good begin with positive ments, and what plants they presentation. For example: comments and add sugges- may pollinate. Did the presentation demon- tions for improvement. strate how bats really behave? 12. To conclude, have students Did it show us why bats are develop a second concept Extensions important? Were the facts map for bats. Then have correct? Was the information students compare their pre- ✔ Have students deliver their clearly presented? Was the pres- and post-concept maps to presentations for other audi- entation interesting? reflect on their new under- ences. For example, invite Creative? Did it change the standing of these animals. another class, or parents. Or way classmates think about Discuss some of their share the presentations with a bats? results. parent or teacher association. 10. Give students time to work ✔ Do bats live in your region? If in their groups to prepare so, which ones? Build (or their presentations. Have order) bat boxes to make a16 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 18. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS Schoolyard Habitats® site Compare the views that stories, art, phrases, and folk for bats. Bats are declining various cultures, including tales. Consider a trip to an in part due to a loss of Native American nations, art or natural history roosting sites. Providing a have toward eagles and other museum to search for infor- place for bats to roost and wildlife species. Which mation on bats. As follow- raise their young can be an wildlife species do they like up, students can investigate exciting project to benefit and dislike? Why? whether the portrayal is fair bats, and a great lead-in to ✔ Examined up close, bats given the animal’s true the Schoolyard Habitats have beautifully complicated behavior. project. For details, and faces and bodies. As a class ✔ For young students, more information about bats project, feature a bat beauty encourage them to list as and bat research projects, contest. Students can find many adjectives as they can consult Bat Conservation pictures of bats and create think of that begin with the International’s (BCI) website detailed drawings of their letters ‘b’ to describe bats. at www.batcon.org. BCI is a features. Which of the ‘b’ adjectives nonprofit organization dedi- ✔ Think of common phrases accurately describe the bat? cated to bat conservation, that refer to bats. For Do people ever use some of the research, and public educa- example, “blind as a bat’’ other adjectives to describe the tion. BCI sells ready-made and “going batty.” Can animals? Which ones? Why? bat houses and offers you think of others? Have For example, are bats blind detailed instructions on how students investigate the and bold or beautiful and to build inexpensive bat origin and meaning of these beneficial? houses. See pages 20-23 of phrases, as well as whether ✔ Pre- and post-concept maps this guide for a lesson plan they are fair statements based described in the lesson offer using these instructions. The on bats’ true behaviors and a great assessment tool. estimated cost of materials characteristics. to build a BCI bat house that can host over 100 bats is less than $20. Assessment✔ What other animals suffer from human misconceptions? ✔ Compare the perceptions Investigate and find out. various cultures have One example is raptors, such regarding bats today and as eagles and hawks. historically. Students might Although they are protected divide into groups (perhaps by law, magnificent animals by region of the world or such as eagles were once shot era) to investigate how these as pests and for sport. bats are portrayed in myths, AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 17www.nwf.org
  • 19. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION ACTIVITY WORKSHEET 2 Indiana Bat Is a bat a mouse with wings? No, bats are not caves with a temperature of rodents. Instead, bats belong to their own special 37-43° F. The caves were once group of mammals, Chiroptera.There are more filled with bats, but now many of the bats are gone. than 1,000 different kinds or species, of bats in the For example, one cave in Kentucky had at least world. Forty-five different species live in the 100,000 bats in the 1960s, but only 250 by 1987. United States. Why are bats disappearing? Some people like to Some bats eat nectar, fruit, or even fish, but almost explore caves, which may disturb bats while they all of the bats in the United States eat insects. In are hibernating. If bats wake up from hibernation fact, they eat lots and lots of insects. One bat can and have to move around, they will use too much eat more than 600 flying insects such as mosqui- energy and not have enough to survive the winter. toes in one hour! They find their food by “echolo- Other times, people build cave gates that lock the cation.’’ They make sounds (which humans cant bats out of their winter homes. Some gates trap air hear) that bounce off other objects and return to in the caves and make it too hot for the bats. their ears.These sounds help them to fly safely and Humans are also changing forests and causing locate their prey. problems for Indiana bats in their summer habitat. Bats like to feed and roost in trees near water- Many people don’t like bats. People think bats can ways. But in some areas, these important trees are get tangled in their hair or spread disease. In fact, cleared by logging, driving away the bats. In other bats can see and are very good at finding their way places, dams have been constructed, removing the around in the dark. A bat can “see” something as trees near the waterways that bats prefer. fine as a human hair using echolocation.The chance of a bat giving someone a disease is less than the But there is hope! In some places, people have chance of being struck by lightning. In fact, bats are built bat-friendly gates. For example, in Tennessee, very useful to people. They eat insects that might people built a special gate that weighs 23 tons.The damage farmers plants and help gate lets bats into their natural habitat but keeps pollinate our crops. people out of this important place for bats. At least nine bat species in the United States are Many other animals also like to live and feed in endangered. Many bats are disappearing because forests next to streams. So, if we protect trees people misunderstand them or try to get rid of next to waterways, we’re protecting habitat for them, and they are losing their habitat. Bats suffer bats and other animals. because we disturb the caves and forests they need. The Indiana Bat is one species in trouble. What do you think about saving bats? This bat lives in parts of Maine,Vermont, New Hampshire, and New York, as well as states farther south and west. In winter, Indiana bats hibernate in18 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 20. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS ACTIVITY WORKSHEET 2 Indiana BatBats look like mice with wings, but they are not on the Endangered Species List.The story of therodents. In fact, they belong to their own group Indiana bat shows the problems faced by many ofwithin the class of mammals, and this group is the 45 bat species in the United States.among mammals most successful. Of the approxi- The Indiana bat is roughly the size of a housemately 4,000 species of mammals, nearly a quarter- sparrow, with gray-brown fur and pink to cinnamonover 1,000 species-are bats. underparts. It eats insects, which females and juve- niles snatch from the air over streams and trees.A few bats feed on nectar or fruit, but most feed on Males look for food at treetop level over denseinsects.They have large appetites.A single bat, flying woods.The species can be found in the Midwestthrough the night sky in pursuit of prey, may eat more and eastern United States, from the westernthan 600 flying insects in one hour.A bat that lives for Ozarks of Oklahoma north to southern Wisconsin,30 years may consume several million insects. east to Vermont, and south to Florida.Bats are high on the list of animals that are victims In winter, the Indiana bat hibernates in limestoneof human myths and misunderstandings.Well- caves, especially caves in which temperaturesadapted to flying at night, bats can navigate in total average 37° to 43° F with a relative humidity aver-darkness across a room crisscrossed with strings. aging 74 percent. In summer, Indiana bats live inThey do it by sending out sounds that bounce off hilly countryside, along riverbanks, and on lowof objects and return to the bats ears, which read plains.The bats roost under the bark of dead andthem like radar. One myth, that bats generally carry dying trees in these areas.the disease rabies, is also false. Only one-half ofone percent (0.5%) of healthy-looking bats exam- The Indiana bat population has been falling since atined in one U.S. study was found to be rapid. least the 1960s. For example, in the 1960s, Kentucky had five caves in which more thanOn the other hand, bats are useful to people. Some 150,000 Indiana bats hibernated. By 1988, the totalbat species are pollinators of useful plants, eating winter population in the five caves was onlynectar from blossoms and carrying pollen from 49,000.Today, nearly 90 percent of all Indiana batsflower to flower.Agaves, plants of the desert hibernate in only seven caves.Southwest used in making fiber ropes and otherproducts, are bat-pollinated. Bats not only help One of the main reasons that batpeople by eating huge numbers of insects, but bat numbers are falling is the loss ofstudies have been important in the development of cave habitat, especially caves used forlow-temperature surgery, vaccines, and navigational hibernation. Some caves have been made intoaids for the blind. tourist attractions. Others have been destroyed by vandals or disturbed by spelunkers (people whoIn recent decades, several U.S. bat species have had explore caves). Since 1950, these and other causespopulation declines. In 1973, the Indiana bat have eliminated and degraded major winter batbecame the first of nine U.S. bat species to appear colonies of West Virginia, Indiana, and Illinois. AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 19www.nwf.org
  • 21. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION ACTIVITY build a bat house! 3 Summary: ✔ One pint water-based primer, Background Students build a bat house for exterior-grade their Backyard Wildlife ✔ One quart flat water-based paint or stain, exterior-grade* Why Build a Bat House? HabitatTM or Schoolyard America’s bats are an invaluable Habitats® Site. ✔ One tube paintable latex caulk natural resource. Yet, due to Grade Level: ✔ 1 x 3 x 28 board for roof decades of unwarranted human 2-8 ✔ 6 to 10 7/8 roofing nails fear and habitat loss, bats are in Time: alarming decline. The loss of bats * Years of research have shown that bat contributes to growing demands 2 hours (plus painting and houses are far more successful at for toxic pesticides that increas- installation time) attracting bats if they are painted or ingly threaten our personal and Subject: stained. Painting helps maintain the proper internal temperature for bats environmental health. science, art, math and also increases the life span of the bat house.Appropriate color depends Skills: upon geographic location and amount of The most important goal is to construction, description, sun exposure.Adjust to darker colors preserve America’s most abun- for less sun. Use exterior-quality, water- dant bats in sufficient numbers analysis based stain or latex paint, and choose Learning Objectives: flat paint rather than gloss or semi-gloss. to maintain nature’s balance. If Students will be able to: you live in areas of bat habitats, putting up a bat house near your ✔ Identify reasons for building a Recommended Tools home or school can help provide bat house. ✔ table saw (for adults only) or a critical safe haven for bats. Bats ✔ Demonstrate a method for handsaw, caulking gun, vari- building a bat house. able speed reversing drill, make good neighbors; as ✔ Identify key criteria for paintbrushes, Phillips bit for primary predators of night- successful bat houses. drill, tape measure or yard- flying insects, they play a vital stick, scissors (optional), role in maintaining the balance Materials: staple gun (optional) of nature. People with occupied (for each house) bat houses on their properties ✔ 1/4 sheet ( 2 x 4 ) 1/2 Bat House Color benefit from having fewer lawn CDX (outdoor grade) Recommendations Based and garden pests, and they enjoy on Average Daily High plywood Temperatures in July learning about bats and sharing ✔ One piece 1 x 2 (3/4 x their knowledge with friends Less than 85˚ F = black 13/4 finished) x 8 pine and neighbors. Few efforts on (furring strip) 85˚ to 95˚ F = dark brown or other behalf of wildlife are more fun ✔ 20 to 30 11/4 coated deck dark shade or rewarding than helping bats. or exterior-grade Phillips 95˚ to 100˚ F = medium brown or screws other medium shade Note: Some teachers opt to buy ✔ One pint black, water-based ready-to-hang bat houses and 100˚ F or greater = light tan or other stain, exterior-grade light shade concentrate the lesson instead on selecting a good site for mounting20 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 22. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATSit. Superior quality bat houses are neighborhood bats use your and disturbance. If you liveavailable through the Bat Conser- outdoor wildlife habitat, and in an area bats use for habitatvation International catalogue at not your house! (check www.enature.com if1-800-538-BATS in the U.S. you need to check), whatand Canada. Preparation could you do to help them? One idea is to build a batLooking for additional or other 1. Measure and cut plywood house to provide additionalways to provide better bat into three pieces for each habitat for them.habitat? You can try these other group: 26 1/2 x 24 for the 3. Divide your students intosimple actions to attract bats to back board, 16 1/2 x 24 small groups to make batyour Backyard Wildlife Habitat for the front top, 5 x 24 houses, or make oneor Schoolyard Habitats site, by for the front bottom. together as a large group.providing the insects to eat, 2. Pre-drill 11 screw holes on Make sure to use all appro-water to drink, and places to the back board, four on each priate safely considerations,hide that bats need for their side and three across the top. equipment, and adult super-habitat. 3. Pre-drill nine screw-holes on vision for use of tools.✔ Got an anti-bug zapper in the front top board, three on 4. Roughen inside of back- your yard? You might want each side and three across board and landing area by to think about getting rid of the top. cutting horizontal grooves it! Zappers are useless on 4. Pre-drill four screw holes on with sharp object or saw. most biting insects and only the front bottom board, two Space grooves about 1/2" kill light-attracted moths, on each side. apart, cutting 1/32" to 1/16" which are good food for bats. deep. Ask students, why you✔ Trees and shrubs, even dead might want to do this? (The ones left standing, are excel- Procedure bats need such texture for lent hideouts for bats—and climbing and roosting.) 1. Ask students, What do you birds. know about bats? Make a list✔ Bats need water to drink. If on the board. What would you you build a mini-pond, like to know? Make a parallel you’ll also attract frogs and list. Discuss some of the many other water creatures. major characteristics of bats Find out how to do this on (from background) with the NWF’s website: students, and refer back to www.nwf.org/backyard- their list for later explorations. wildlifehabitat/ or at a 2. Explain to students that garden center or library. many bats are highly endan-✔ Close up any holes in your gered (What does that mean?) attic to ensure that your due to habitat destruction AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 21www.nwf.org
  • 23. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION 5. Apply two coats of black, Start with 24 piece at top. BACK water-based stain to interior Roosting chamber will be surfaces. Do not use paint, 3/4 wide (front to back). as it will fill grooves, making 8. Attach front to furring them unusable. strips, top piece first (don’t 6. Measure and cut furring forget to caulk wherever FRONT TOP strips into one 24 and two pieces meet along both top 20 1/4 pieces. and sides). Leave 1/2 vent 7. Attach furring strips (3/4 space between top and wide) to back, caulking first. bottom front pieces. FRONT BOTTOM FURRING STRIPS KEY CRITERIA FOR SUCCESSFUL BAT HOUSES DESIGN: - All bat houses should be at least 2 feet metal siding are seldom used.Wood or stone build- tall and 14 inches or more wide, with a landing area ings with good solar exposure are excellent extending below the entrance at least 3 to 6 inches. choices, and locations under the eaves often have • Most houses have one to four roosting cham- been successful. Mounting two bat houses back to bers—the more the better. Roost partitions back on poles is ideal. Place houses 3/4 inch apart should be carefully spaced 3/4 to 1 inch apart. and cover both with a galvanized metal roof to • All partitions and landing areas should be rough- protect the center roosting space from rain. ened.Wood surfaces can be scratched or grooved All bat houses should be mounted at least 12 feet horizontally, at roughly 3-inch intervals, or above ground; 15 to 20 feet is better. covered with durable plastic mesh (1/8 inch or 1/4 inch mesh, available from companies such as PROTECTION FROM PREDATORS: Houses Internet, Inc. at 1-800-328-8456). mounted on sides of buildings or on metal poles • Include vents 6 inches from the bottom of all provide the best protection from predators. houses to be used where average July high temperatures are 85º F or above. Front vents are AVOIDING UNINVITED GUESTS: Wasps can as long as a house is wide; side vents are 6 inches invade bat boxes before bats fully occupy it. Use of tall by 1/2 inch wide. 3/4-inch roosting spaces reduces wasp use. If nests accumulate, they should be removed in late winter HABITAT: Most nursery colonies of bats choose or early spring before either wasps or bats return. roosts within 1/4 mile of water, preferably a stream, Open-bottom houses greatly reduce problems with river, or lake. Greatest bat house success has been birds, mice, squirrels or parasites, and guano (bat achieved in areas of diverse habitat (with lots of droppings) does not accumulate inside. different species present). Bat houses are most likely to succeed in regions where bats are already TIMING: Bat houses can be installed at any time of attempting to live in buildings. the year, but are more likely to be used during their first summer if installed before the bats return in MOUNTING: Bat houses should be mounted on spring. poles or buildings. Houses mounted on trees or22 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 24. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATS9. Caulk around all outside contributes to successful joints to further seal roosting bat habitat. chamber. 13. Install your bat house and10. Attach a 1 x 3 x 28 observe it! What do you board to the top as a roof, if discover? desired (optional, but highly recommended). Assessment11. Paint or stain exterior three times (use primer for first ✔ Write a letter to Ranger Rick coat). Raccoon at the National12. Where will you put up your Wildlife Federation about new bat house? Ask students your bat house, explaining to identify criteria for good what you learned about placement, based on what building and planning your they know about bats. bat house. Ask any bat- Consider: related questions you have. • permission to put it up, Be sure to use Bat Stamps on close to a pond, stream, or your envelope! lake where bats feed and ✔ Design a brochure showing drink, how to build and where to • diverse habitat that place a bat house. supplies a variety of insects, • lots of sunshine to warm the house (at least six hours daily in hot climates, more in cool locations, so young stay warm and grow fast), • facing east, west, or south (avoiding west in exception- ally hot climates) • on a pole or the side of a building), • about 12-15 feet above ground, • in an open area at least 20 feet away from nearest trees or other obstacles. For each of these factors, ask students to consider how it AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 23www.nwf.org
  • 25. BATS NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION What You Can Do to Help Bats You do not need to travel far or between the wall and the www.batcon.org and click have a degree in biology to help opening. The bat then can on "Reading Lists" or call bats. You can make a big differ- be released outside. Do not 512-327-9721 for a packet ence for bat conservation by attempt to handle bats of materials. For NWF working on local projects. The without gloves; they may teacher resources, visit following suggestions may bite in self-defense. www.nwf.org/ apply to your bats locally. ✔ Provide bats and rabies facts schoolyardhabitats. to local health departments, ✔ Building a Schoolyard Actions That Everyone veterinarians, and personal Habitat Site® at your school Can Take: physicians. To obtain infor- or Backyard Wildlife ✔ Visit Bat Conservation mation about bats and Habitat™ at your home, International public health issues, visit complete with native plants, (www.batcon.org or call www.batcon.org and click bird feeders, bee-attracting 512-327-9721) to obtain on “Bats and Rabies” or call flowers, and other food, the most up-to-date infor- 512-327-9721 to receive a water, shelter, and places to mation about bats and bat hard copy of these materials. raise young for all your local conservation. ✔ Help a neighbor, school, or wildlife. To find out more, ✔ Encourage your family to community center provide visit www.nwf.org/ visit National Wildlife bat habitats. backyardwildlifehabitat Federation (www.nwf.org) and www.nwf.org/ to learn about all kinds of Even if you dont live in an schoolyardhabitat. To find wildlife and habitat area with bats, out what wildlife live in protection. there are still lots of actions your area, visit ✔ Consider giving a bat lecture you can take to help protect www.enature.com. to local schools, nature wildlife and habitat! ✔ Organizing a wildlife appre- centers, zoos, museums, or It is important to understand ciation day at your school libraries. Slides and videos are wildlife before people can really and educating other available through BCI’s care about their survival. students about the impor- catalog. Teachers and students can tance of wildlife and habitat. ✔ Write an article about bats increase wildlife awareness and ✔ Promoting the “look, but do for your local newspaper contribute to habitat protec- not touch” approach of (especially for Halloween). tion and restoration by: respecting wild animals. ✔ Help people safely remove ✔ Teaching a unit on habitats stray bats from living quar- and wildlife. Exciting ters. This can be done easily activity guides are available by covering the bat with a both through BCI and coffee can when it lands and NWF. For a list of teacher slipping a piece of cardboard references, visit24 | AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE www.nwf.org
  • 26. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BATSFurther ResourcesFor more information on bats ✔ Link to other bat conserva- ✔ Download bat house plansand Backyard Wildlife Habitat tion resources and over 150 and secrets to successful batprojects, check out: different bat conservation houses atwww.nwf.org/ and resource sites at www.batcon.org/bhra/backyardwildlifehabitat/ and www.batcon.org/home/ index.html.www.batcon.org. batlinks.html. ✔ For information on whichFor articles and activities on all species are present in yourkinds of wildlife, subscribe to: area, visitRanger Rick, Your Big Backyard, www.enature.com.or Wild Animal Baby by ✔ Check out Bats of the Unitedvisiting www.nwf.org/kids/. States by Michael Harvey, J Scott Altenbach, and Troy L. Best, 1999. Published by the Arkansas Game and FishResource Information Commission in cooperationFor independent study, with the U.S. Fish andanswering questions, and Wildlife Service, this 64-educating others, go to page color paperback bookwww.batcon.org/discover/ has large photos, range maplayout-discovery.html. and descriptions for each U.S. bat species and lots ofTo delve deeper into special general bat information.topics and research about bats✔ Search BATS Magazine back Teacher and Student Issues and access all text and Activities—Free Stuff! photos from BATS Maga- ✔ Download activities from zine archives at the “Educator’s Activity www.batcon.org/batsmag/ Book” (elementary age index.html. students) at✔ Search bibliographic data- www.batcon.org/ base of scientific literature topedu.html. about bats and browse bibli- ✔ Download an activity from ographic references for “Discover Bats!” (middle- 6,000 entries about bats and school age students) at bat research at www.batcon.org/disco/ www.batcon.org/bibsearch. intro.html. html. AMERICAN BATS: ONLINE ACTIVITY GUIDE | 25www.nwf.org