Good news from Europe

Baturday News is a weekly blog written by Rachael, a high school student, bat advocate, and Save Lucy volunteer. Rachael’s interest in bats was sparked by the big brown bats that used the outside of her former home for a winter roost. Rachael has been writing the Baturday News for over three years.

A photo of a Sardinian long eared bat
A Sardinian long-eared bat protected in the EU. Courtesy

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a good week. I did not. I WAS ROBBED!!! I was promised snow. Ok, it wasn’t going to be a lot of snow, but I live in Fairfax County. If it had just snowed a little teeny tiny bit before 5:00-ish in the morning, I could have had a delayed school opening. But, it did not. No, it waited until everyone was safely in school before it started snowing. By the time it was all done, we had a whole ½ inch on the grass. Is that enough to cancel school for the rest of the month??? No, it is not! And, to make things worse, the people who live just a little bit north of me got tons and tons of snow. I am a little jealous. And I feel a little lied to by a pesky rodent, too.

Ok, I got that off my chest. I feel a little better now, thank you.

And now, for the good news. As most of you know, bat populations have been declining due to many reasons, including environmental changes, habitat destruction, wind turbines, and for us here in North America, White Nose Syndrome. But, bats in Europe are making a comeback!

All bats are protected in Europe and European governments have joined together to try to save the bats. A study of 16 of the 45 bat species in nine countries in Europe shows that many of the bat populations increased by 43% between 1993 and 2011. They studied hibernating bats at 6,000 sites in Latvia, Hungary, the Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia, the United Kingdom, and Germany.

Although this is really good news, European bats are still vulnerable. Hopefully, with the laws in place and the cooperation between the European governments, they will be able to save their bats.

If you would like to read the article, you can find it here.


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