Now that it’s October, it’s time to celebrate autumn and my favorite holiday, Halloween!
And what animal is more iconic to Halloween than the bat? So of course, now would be a great time to celebrate these amazing creatures. Let’s get batty about bats!
How about hosting a potluck with foods that benefit from bats? Bat Conservation International’s Bats in the Pantry cookbook celebrates all of the foods that directly benefit from bats through pollination and seed dispersal, as well as those that indirectly benefit from bats eating agricultural pests.
Or maybe you could share bat-themed desserts during an after-hours workshop about the benefits of bats? Halloween-themed cookie cutters and candies make it easy to create batty treats such as bat-shaped rice krispie treats, bat cupcakes, or chocolate bat cookies.
If bats are still active in your area, you could work with your state’s Wildlife Department or DNR to host a bat watch at dusk to observe bats leaving their roosts and feeding on insects.
Perhaps you could invite community members to a bat box building workshop. Participants could build simple 1-chamber bat boxes and be given instructions on how to install them at their homes, or could work in groups to construct larger bat boxes to install in appropriate habitat at your site. This is a particularly great project for scouts, who can earn badges for participating.
Don’t forget the kids! Try engaging local kids in a contest to create decorations for their school or a community center that show the beauty and benefits of bats. Or work with teachers to hold a workshop for students where they about bats and create bat-themed decorations, like bat-o’-lanterns and egg carton bats, or for a more educational bent, a bat mobile of bat facts.
Do you have any other ideas for ways to celebrate bats? Share them in the comments!