Our Bat Class

Bat flight dissected

Our next presentation (“Bats of California’s Central Coast”) will be via Zoom for the Morro Coast Audubon Society (MCAS; (https://www.morrocoastaudubon.org/p/calendar.html) on Monday, 19 September 2022 at 7:00 PM. There will be limited availability for 12 persons who “attend” the Zoom presentation to partake of an evening bat walk on Tuesday, 20 September in Chorro Park (limited to 12 coastal resident members) or an evening bat walk at the Santa Rita Preserve (in coordination with the SLO Land Conservancy) on Thursday, 22 September (limited to 12 inland resident members). The field group limitations are necessary to maximize the value of the experience to our participants.

Also scheduled (and also, through the Morro Coast Audubon Society) is a more extensive class in association with the group’s 2023 winter bird festival. There is a possibility that we will add a bonus field component. Since the class will be in January, that decision will be weather-dependent as cold, rain, and wind tend to reduce (or preclude) winter bat activity. The classroom presentation will be given on Friday, 13 January from 9:00 AM until 11:30 AM. If there will be a field component, consensus from the group will dictate time and place. Additional information will be available through the MCAS Web site.

Stay in touch to find out when we’ll hold our next “Bats of California’s Central Coast” class.

This eight-hour class will include:

  • Species accounts of the bats of California’s Central Coast
  • Bat ecology – where our local bats occur and what niche they occupy, and their significance to agriculture as pest control agents
  • Bat biology – anatomy of a bat; migration, hibernation, activity cycles; day, night, and maternity roosting
  • Bats and disease – Rabies & other bat-borne diseases; a cost/benefit analysis; safe practices for people & pets
  • Echolocation – How bats navigate, communicate, and find prey
  • How we study bats – the technology of bat studies (use of bat detectors, infrared videography, spotlight surveys, mist-netting, etc.)
  • How to become Citizen Bat Scientist
  • Q&A to answer class participants’ questions and inquiries
  • A field excursion to a nearby pond to look for and record bats

The iPad and the bats

Paso-area active bat monitoring

The class will introduce participants to the 19 bat species that occur in the Central Coast region. In addition to the general biology of bats, we will also investigate their biological and economic importance, especially their importance to agriculture – including their value here on California’s Central Coast and the role bats can and do play in sustainable agriculture. The course will be tailored to encourage participants into becoming citizen scientists to study, promote, and educate about bats.