bats

Environment
4:51 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

The Return Of Bracken Bats Is Good News For Texas Farmers

Bracken Bat Cave in winter when the resident bats have flown south. Here, workers are preparing to collect the cave's bat guano, a popular natural fertilizer.
Eileen Pace TPR News

After their winter trip south, Mexican free-tailed bats are returning to the Bracken Bat Cave in Central Texas in larger numbers, which is good news for South Texas agriculture.

Millions of Mexican free-tailed bats make their summer home at the Bracken Cave just north of San Antonio, and farmers in South Texas rely on them to swarm across their farmland and eat the insects that can destroy crops.

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JBSA Lackland
4:22 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Bat Colony Discovered In Lackland Dorm

Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland.
Eileen Pace TPR News

Bat experts have determined a bat colony has established itself inside the walls of a 45-year-old dorm building at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland. 

More than 200 Lackland recruits are on a rabies vaccine regimen after several bats were discovered in their dorm a couple of weeks ago. But the building is huge, and although the dorms were secured and entrances sealed off, it took experts a longer time to find the bat colony that was discovered over the weekend.

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Joint Base San Antonio
10:45 am
Wed January 22, 2014

JBSA-Lackland Trainees Vaccinated For Rabies

Sign entering Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, where a handful of bats were removed from a basic training dorm last week
Eileen Pace TPR News

Update (1/22 1045 a.m.): The following statement was released this morning in regard to the bat that was caught and tested for rabies:

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Bracken Bat Cave
9:40 am
Fri January 10, 2014

Bracken Bat Cave Gets Reprieve After Developer Opts Out Of Surrounding Property

The land around Bracken Bat Cave and the proposed subdivision, which will now not be developed.
Bat Conservation International

A tentative buyer has declined to purchase the property -- known as Crescent Hills -- adjacent to the Bracken Bat Cave and now a coalition of potential buyers is hoping to acquire the land to preserve it.

The coalition is a loosely-knit group of people and organizations who want to see the land surrounding the bat cave permanently preserved instead of being open for development of houses and commercial activity.

One of the interested parties is San Antonio District 8 Councilman Ron Nirenberg.

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Bracken Bat Cave
2:13 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

Watch 10 Million Bats Emerge At Bracken Bat Cave -- From Your Couch

Millions of bats begin their nightly flight at sundown at the Bracken Bat Cave.
Ryan Loyd TPR News

You usually have to sign up to go out to the Bracken Bat Cave to see the world's largest bat colony leave the confines of their cave home for the night, but now you can just pull up a website.

The Bracken "Bat Cam" is now live -- though there isn't much to see early in the day -- and the bats begin their exodus at about 7:30 p.m.

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Downtown
12:53 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

Bat Walks A New Downtown Tuesday Attraction

Millions of bats begin their nightly flight at sundown at the Bracken Bat Cave.
Ryan Loyd TPR News

The bats that fly out from under the Congress Avenue bridge in Austin are a popular visitor attraction, but San Antonio now has its own bat population large enough to show off along the San Antonio Riverwalk.

The Paseo del Rio Association, the San Antonio River Authority, Texas Parks and Wildlife and Bat Conservation International are hosting Bat Loco, an informative series of bat walks, now through mid-August to raise awareness of  the importance of bats in our ecosystem.

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Bracken Bat Cave
4:13 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

SAWS Stands Firm In Decision To Serve Neighborhood Near Bracken Bat Cave

Bats begin to take flight from the Bracken Bat Cave in June, just weeks before the maternity colony was set to give birth.
Ryan Loyd TPR

A trio of opponents against a proposed community near the Bracken Bat Cave once again appealed to the San Antonio Water System to rescind its decision to provide the area with water and sewer service.

The board made that decision in March, and by law is required to provide service to developments in its coverage area.

SAWS spokesperson Greg Flores said the water provider is not backing down from its position.

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Bracken Bat Cave
9:12 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Aquifer Alliance Says SAWS Has Alternative In Bat Cave Controversy

Bat Conservation International

The Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance said the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality can issue a variance to its rule that SAWS provide water to the Crescent Hills Subdivision, which is located near the Bracken Bat Cave.

SAWS has said it has no choice but to provide the sewer and water mains because of its Certificate of Convenience and Necessity, but GEAA Executive Director Annalisa Peace said the group's attorneys have research the issue and say the TCEQ can change the certificate at the request of SAWS.

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Around the Nation
4:16 pm
Tue June 11, 2013

Massive Bat Cave Stirs Texas-Size Debate Over Development

Millions of bats live in Bracken Cave, in a rural area near San Antonio. Conservationists are worried that plans for a multithousand-unit housing development will disrupt the bat colony.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 5:28 pm

The Bracken Bat Cave, just north of San Antonio, is as rural as it gets. You have to drive down a long, 2-mile rocky road to reach it. There's nothing nearby — no lights, no running water. The only thing you hear are the katydids.

The cave houses a massive bat colony, as it has for an estimated 10,000 years. Bat Conservation International, the group that oversees the Bracken Cave Reserve, wants it to stay secluded, but the area's rural nature could change if a local developer's plan moves forward.

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Environment
10:11 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Speakers Protest Development At City Council, But Can Council Do Anything?

A rare view from inside the Bracken Bat Cave when the bats have migrated to Mexico for the winter. Hoses vacuum out guano for use as fertilizer.
Eileen Pace

San Antonio City Council last night heard three hours of pleas from opponents of a high-density housing development who said it will be the beginning of the end of the Bracken Bat Cave.

Dozens of speakers came to ask council to prohibit SAWS from building sewer lines to the Comal County project.

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