Second annual Bat Week set to launch nationwide

Waterhouse’s leaf-nosed bat

Bat Week, which this year will be Oct. 25-31, includes a signature event on Capitol Hill, a week-long social media campaign aimed to engage and educate the public on bats and a Guinness World Record attempt for most bat houses built in a day. The record setting attempt will aptly be held on Halloween Day at multiple locations including Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and at Austin’s Congress Avenue Bridge, the largest urban bat colony in the world.

Oct. 27, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) is the featured guest along with other members of Congress and their staff, leading federal experts on white-nose syndrome, and policy makers at a reception on Capitol Hill to kick off the week long celebration.

Halloween day marks a Guinness World Record attempt for most bat houses built in a day. Throughout the day, participants at designated sites around the globe will attempt to build thousands of bat houses to give bats new places to roost and raise their young. Bat house building is an easy, fun conservation project for both children and adults. 

Bat lovers in Austin can join in the Guinness World Record attempt at the Austin Bat House Building Event hosted by Bat Conservation International (BCI). The event, sponsored by Austin Footwear Labs and Austin Batworks, will be held at the Ann W. Richards Congress Avenue Bridge Bat Viewing Area on Oct. 31 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. The event includes bat house building, bat presentations from BCI bat experts, stalls from event sponsors and the chance to meet live bats. Registrations for the event can be made at www.batcon.org/batweekaustin. Austin participants will join partakers at other designated sites around the globe to build thousands of bat houses to give bats new places to roost and raise their young.

“We want to connect families and conservation in a way that has never been done before and allow individuals an opportunity to make a real difference in the conservation of these wonderful animals,” said Andrew Walker, Executive Director of Bat Conservation International (BCI). “Bat houses provide a safe haven from predators and offer critical shelter where bats can safely raise their pups. By becoming part of this world record attempt, individuals will directly impact the lives and wellbeing of bats across North America, all while having a lot of fun.”

Organizations can register to be a bat house building site at www.batweek.org.

— Bat Conservation International press release

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