Our Bat Class

Bat flight dissected

Sign up for Bats of California’s Central Coast“, taught through the Cuesta College Community Education Program. 

This eight-hour class – four 2-hour sessions – will take place on four Tuesday evenings in March (March 6th, 13th, 20th, and 27th, 2018) at the Cuesta College North County Campus located at 2800 Buena Vista Drive, just one half mile from downtown Paso Robles.

The final class will include an acoustic field survey at a location near the Cuesta College campus

The iPad and the bats

Paso-area active bat monitoring

The class will introduce participants to the 16 bat species that occur in the Central Coast region. Topics covered will include bat biology, natural history, and ecology. Special attention will be placed on bat echolocation – how bats navigate and find food and also how scientists use this capability to study them. We will also investigate the biological and economic importance of bats, 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.

Here’s our current class line-up:

Session 1 (6 March)

  • Hour 1: Species accounts of the bats of California’s Central Valley
  • Hour 2: Bat ecology – where our local bats occur and what niche they occupy; bats and their importance to agriculture

Session 2 (13 March)

  • Hour 1: Bat biology – anatomy of a bat; migration, hibernation, activity cycles, day & night roosts
  • Hour 2: Bats and disease; dangers & benefits

Session 3 (20 March)

  • Hour 1: Echolocation – How bats navigate and find prey 
  • Hour 2: How we study bats – the technology of bat studies (bat detectors, infrared videography, spotlight surveys)

Session 4 (20 March)

  • Hour 1: Become a Citizen Bat Scientist & answers to class participants’ questions and inquiries 
  • Hour 2: Field excursion to a nearby pond to look for and record bats

Make sure you subscribe to the Cuesta College Community Education mail list to to stay abreast of the many great classes offered by this great Cuesta College program.