Every once in a while you just need to do something a little different
Our sales person for our new house (who has since moved to a different home builder) asked if we want to join a group for a very special event (this was in April)
And if it involves taking hubby to work at 5:30 am,
Drive back home only to return to pick him up at noon
Head towards the location with plenty of time to spare so you schedule a meeting with low-voltage sub on the new house (which is on the way to the event)
Great meeting with the sub, only to be running late to the event now – arrived with time to spare – good thing because if we were late then they lock us out!
Arrive at the event – only to wait …………..
And when the event is over you drive back home (4 hours) to get up and go to work the next day….
Now if this seems a little batty to you – WAIT until you see these photos!
Bracken Cave Preserve is part of the Bat Conservation Inc program 501c3
Our guide for the evening – very soft-spoken and if you are too loud you will be “shushed”
While we waited for the event to start I took some random photos. This one turned out great. The one of the very large skunk not as good so I will not share. Needless to say we kept our eye on the skunk!
A late start for our event – but around 8:40 pm they decided to make an appearance. Monday night they emerged at 8:09, they must’ve known we had a long drive home! I could not see this with my eye – glad the camera caught it
And out they come……
And off the go. These are the Mexican Free-tailed bats.
They head southeast from the cave to feed on the insects in the agricultural areas in the New Braunfels area
Bats are not blind – they actually have great site – better than humans
Now – that is a pretty good photo (NO PHOTO SHOP – straight from the camera with a little cropping!) These bats eat insects. Some bats eat fruit and nectar. And there are bats in South America that do like blood, but they do not suck the blood, they make a bite and then lap it up (TMI!)
These bats are all momma’s that will begin delivering their babies any day……one baby per momma. They only nurse their own baby, there are millions of mommas and babies, they use sound and smell to find each other in the “pile”
As they emerged we could smell the ammonia smell also migrating from the cave from over 10,000 years of bat guano
Can you see all the bats against the foliage?
And they keep on coming – they will emerge for about 4 hours.
To see what the emergence looks like on radar click here – be sure to scroll to the bottom of the link – it is really cool!
In the pre-dawn hours they will return, diving straight into the cave, this also takes about 4 hours
This red-tailed hawk was perched in the top of a tree long before the emergence waiting for dinner
And he is ready to swoop in
The majority of these bats migrate between Bracken Cave and Mexico. They reside here from about April til November
Bracken Cave is home to the largest mammal population in the world!
Bracken is not the only place you find bats……
And this little guy was spotted by my granddaughter a couple of years ago – he was up inside the patio umbrella. One of our neighbors has a bat house. We had to encourage him to fly back to his house – he was quite confused. When you build a bat house you allow them to sleep over when they need to venture farther than normal for food.
So me going a little batty is nothing new to most of you! I hope you enjoyed going batty with me and that you learned something new!