You've heard the saying 'If you are cold, they're cold.' This past week winter storm Uri really brought in the cold. I was wondering what impact that had on our animal populations. How did animals survive temperatures so far below normal for our state? Recent reports from Texas Parks and Wildlife have made it clear that many did not.

Images of the bodies of bats pilled up under bridges in Texas really hit home. The Wildlife Diversity Program at Texas Parks and Wildlife has enlisted our help to gather data on the scale of the loss. They are asking that we check under bridges and overpasses all over the state for bats.

A project has been started at Inaturalist.org to learn the scope of this massive die off of native animal species. You can report your findings to the link provided above, and get a more in-depth look at other species that were effected.

They need data, so they need numbers, even if it's just an estimate. If you do find bats in your search, never handle them dead or alive. Some members of the bat colonies observed so far did survive. It will take time for them to come back to former levels. 

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We need bats. They are essential for pest control. They feed off of the beetle, moth, grasshopper, and dreaded mosquito populations. Just their presence in your area can keep bugs at bay. Bats aren't just a fun Halloween decoration. Any thoughts of them being creepy, goes away when you find out how much they benefit our ecosystem.

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