Listen to the
for Stop #19,
spoken by Joe Forsythe, Guide, American Cave Museum
Click to Read the Tour Script for
Stop #19 Home to Bats - Narrator: Joe Forsythe
Bats are certainly the best known inhabitants of caves. There are three species found in Hidden River Cave, the little brown, the big brown and the tricolor. The most common is the little brown bat. There are lots of scary stories about bats, but in fact, these stories are just myths. Bats are actually very beneficial creatures. They consume insects, including mosquitoes and many pests that destroy crops. A single little brown bat can eat up to 1,000 mosquitoes in an hour! Unfortunately, bat populations around the world are in decline. The greatest threat to bats is white-nose syndrome, a condition caused by a cold-loving white fungus that is found on the faces and wings of infected bats. The syndrome makes bats wake up more often during hibernation, using up the fat reserves they had stored for the winter. It also causes them to emerge from hibernation prematurely, which means they may freeze or starve to death. Scientists are trying to find a way to prevent white nose syndrome from spreading.
Oral Histories about the
"Home of Bats"
Joe Forsythe, Guide American Cave Museum
"5,000 Insects a Night"
"A Bat Rescue"
"Bats in Hidden River Cave"
"Bats in Medicine"
"Beginning of the Bat Rehab Program"
"Birds and Bats"
"Crevice Dwellers, Foliage Dwellers, and Maternal Colonies"
"From Pecans to Tequilla"
"Hibernation, White Nose Syndrome, and Starvation"
"How Big is Big?"
"Other Kentucky Bats"
"The Bat App"
"The Big Brown, The Little Brown, and The Tri Color"