Yuma myotis is one of the species people may encounter. (J. Burgar photo)

Bat-count volunteers sought for White Rock area

Seaside city provides ‘ideal habitat’ for roost sites, organizers say

Organizers of an annual tally of B.C.’s bats are looking for volunteers to help log the mammals’ population in the White Rock area.

The BC Community Bat Program Annual Bat Count is a “citizen-science initiative” that encourages residents to count bats at local roost sites.

“White Rock provides ideal habitat for bats and the BC Communitu Bat Program requires help from local residents,” regional bat co-ordinator Danielle Dagenais told Peace Arch News by email.

According to a news release, volunteer counters can be any age and even participate while relaxing in a deck chair.

The count aims to collect baseline data on bat populations before the devastating White Nose Syndrome fungal disease affects bats in the province.

“White Nose Syndrome is estimated to have killed more than seven million bats since it was first discovered in eastern North America a decade ago,” biologist Mandy Kellner, co-ordinator of the BC Community Bat Program, said in the release.

“In March 2016, the disease was detected just east of Seattle, and has now spread within Washington State. This has greatly increased our urgency to understand bat populations in BC. We need the public’s help to census local bat populations – we never know when it is our last year to obtain population estimates before White Nose Syndrome causes widespread declines in western North America.”

Count volunteers wait outside a known roost site – such as a bat-house, barn, bridge or attic – and count bats as they fly out at twilight. The final number is recorded along with basic information on weather conditions. Organizers say ideally, one to two counts will be done between June 1-21, before pups are born, and one or two more between July 11 and Aug. 5, when pups are flying.

Those who want to get involved but don’t have a roost site on their property will be matched with a roost site nearby, according to the release.

People are also encouraged to report the location of known roost sites so that they may be monitored in the future.

Funded by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and the Forest Enhancement Society of BC, and with support of the BC Conservation Foundation and the provincial government, the BC Community Bat Program provides information for people dealing with bat issues on their property or who have questions about how to attract bats.

For more information about bat counts, or to get assistance dealing with bat issues, visit www.bcbats.ca or call 1-855-9BC-BATS.

Just Posted

New faces on Surrey council: Who they are and how they got here

The council includes seven of eight candidates who ran with Doug McCallum-led Safe Surrey Coalition

Missing girl, 15, known to frequent Guildford area of Surrey

Surrey RCMP seek help to locate Hailey McClelland, last seen Oct. 18

Homicide team called in after man assaulted in Surrey dies in hospital

Police say they were called about assault early Sunday morning but both caller and victim took off

Dancing zombies expected in droves at Surrey’s ‘Thrill the World’ event

Michael Jackson’s iconic video inspires group-dance gatherings around the globe

Man accused of murdering his wife in Surrey

Rizig Bona, 44, charged with second-degree murder in death of wife, Anida Magaya, 42, in Surrey

SLIDESHOW: White Rock Pumpkin Run raises $40K

Families dressed in Halloween costumes for annual event

Election watchdog seeks digitally savvy specialists to zero in on threats

Move follows troublesome evidence of online Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election

More court before Dutch man charged in Amanda Todd case is extradited here

Appeals must be dealt with in Europe, before charges faced in B.C.

Crown says man guilty of B.C. girl’s 1978 murder based on alleged confession

Jury hears details of girl’s 1978 murder while Crown says man should be convicted of girl’s murder based on alleged confession.

BCHL alumni has NHL jersey retired by Anaheim Ducks

Paul Kariya played with the Penticton Vees from 1990-1992

‘Violent’ B.C. man wanted on Canada-wide warrant could be in Lower Mainland

RCMP say the man has likely made his way to the Lower Mainland or another community

Most Read

l -->