The climes, they are a changing

I would like to dedicate this week’s blog to Sudan. Sudan was the world’s last surviving male northern white rhino. He lived in Kenya and was 45 years old. Sudan’s daughter and granddaughter are the last two remaining northern white rhinos in the world. His death brings us closer to a world without these wonderful animals. I would like to thank all the people who were involved in Sudan’s care over the years and those who are still caring for and protecting the two females. Without you, it is possible that this species would have gone extinct years ago. Rest in peace sweet Sudan. We’ll miss you.

A photograph of freetail bats emerging in early evening
A lovely shot of a freetail emergence in Texas. Photo by our good friend Ann Fro.

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a good week. I would like to thank everyone who has encouraged me and commiserated with me while I suffered through a long and virtually snowless winter. I am happy to report that Northern Virginia greeted the beginning of spring with a lovely snowstorm. That’s right! It snowed a whole 4 inches! Do you have any idea what 4 inches of snow does to Fairfax County? It Shuts It Down!!! Everything was closed! I didn’t have to go to school for TWO days! Sadly, the snow melted and I was unjustly forced to go to school on Friday. But, now it is Spring Break and I will get to sleep late for an entire week!

While I was home enjoying my snow days, I read an interesting article about bats in Bracken cave. Scientists studying radar measurements for weather surveillance around Bracken cave discovered that Brazilian free-tailed bats are flying north to Texas from Mexico about two weeks earlier than they used to. They also found that more of the bats are staying in Texas through the winter.

This research shows that bats can be studied remotely without disturbing the colonies. It also shows that bats are capable of adapting to at least some changes in their environment. It is still unknown if bats will be able to adapt to more extreme climate changes.

If you would like to read more about this research, you can find information here.

I would like to wish everyone who celebrates a very Happy Passover. I hope everyone has a good week.

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