Rafinesque’s Big-Eared Bat Colony – Texas Parks and Wildlife [Official]


{Water splashes}
[Laurie Lomas] This is Anders Pond and what’s cool about
this area is that it is a natural tupelo pond. [Narration]
Biologist, Laurie Lomas, is looking for an animal few folks ever get to see… {Water splashes} [Narration]
She’s scanning the trees of this Tupelo swamp for the threatened Rafinesque’s Big-eared
bat. [Laurie Lomas]
Being that the Rafinesque’s Big-eared bat is a species that depends upon older growth
trees, you tend to find them here. {Wind blowing in trees.} [Laurie Lomas]
This tupelo tree was discovered about four years ago, we put some radio tracking devices
on the bats to figure out where they were going in the winter. Turns out this is the
tree where we would find them almost all the time. [Laurie Lomas]
In the winter these bats will all colonize together in the same roost, however in the
spring the males go their separate ways and the females all stick together and they form
a maternity colony where they’ll all have their pups in their summer roost. [Narration]
One group of bats has found the perfect summer home in this rather spooky-looking structure.
{Music} [Laurie Lomas]
This house was abandoned 18 years ago, we were going to tear it down, we decided that
we would rather keep it open for the bats and actually keep the house in working order
enough so they could use it as a roost. {Music fades} [Laurie Lomas]
Oh there’s some right there, one, two, three…. {Bat squeaks} [Laurie Lomas]
You typically find the bats in abandoned houses in the spring to summer months because they’re
looking for a warm roost, and we have some towers as well that were built specifically
for these bats and this maternity colony. And they’re close by and the bats will readily
move from here to the towers depending on the temperature. [Laurie Lomas]
I can hear them, they’re in there! {Door creeks} [Laurie Lomas]
Oh, there’s one right there! Oh! {Music} {Bat squeaks} [Laurie Lomas]
The Rafinesque’s Big-eared bat has very large ears, as you can tell! They kind of resemble
rabbit ears. They’re used for echolocation. They’re used for navigating in the dark
and also for hunting prey and also for communicating with each other as well. {Music} [Narration]
With man-made roosts, and with further protection of pristine habitats, there is hope that the
Rafinesque’s Big-eared bat may one day be out of the woods.
[Laurie Lomas] What we know about this bat is it was in decline. {Boat splashes in water} [Laurie Lomas]
Because these guys need old bottomland hardwood forest, very old forest {Music} [Laurie Lomas]
We’ve purchased this refuge, we’re continuing to purchase more properties and let the properties
get older and older and older. And as the trees mature that will create more habitat
for these guys! {Music fades}

10 thoughts on “Rafinesque’s Big-Eared Bat Colony – Texas Parks and Wildlife [Official]

  1. Man its sad the home was abandoned, I mean too live in such an enchanting location, the woods, near the swamp, all the forest creatures, etc. Just the peacefulness, and tranquility.

  2. We found a huge maternity colony of Townsend's Big-Eared Bats (hundreds of them) in an abandoned church in Coke County, Texas three days ago. The footage is featured in the latest video on my channel. Fascinating creatures.

  3. I found two of them roosting together in an old barn down in Georgia they are so cute. I know most people hate bats since they look like rats with wings but I think the are awesome!

  4. Aw those amazing, adorable ears! So glad you and other groups are doing so much to help these tiny little bug eating machines :))

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