show caves with bat colonies?

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show caves with bat colonies?

Postby struebe » Jan 1, 2020 9:44 pm

Hi all - does anyone know of a show cave with an active bat colony or one that closes seasonally for bats? If so, what is the show cave name and the season of closure (either hibernaculum or maternity)? Thanks!
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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby bobby49 » Jan 1, 2020 10:00 pm

One of the best known show caves is Carlsbad, and the bat flight is famous.

In Pinnacles National Park, the Bear Gulch Cave is a talus cave that has a seasonal bat colony. The rangers periodically close parts of the cave as a result. Bear Gulch Cave is public, otherwise.

As a general rule, the very high elevation caves tend to be too cold for bats, so you will find them more at moderate elevations at moderate latitudes.
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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby struebe » Jan 1, 2020 10:23 pm

Excellent, thanks for the reminder about Carlsbad - but that section of the cave is not ever open for tours, is it?

Didn't know about Bear Gulch - will check it out.
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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby ohiocaver » Jan 2, 2020 2:13 pm

Carter Caves State Park in Kentucky has seasonal closures for bats - both in Bat Cave and Saltpeter Cave (and maybe some others). Laurel and the Horn Hollow caves were closed, too, but I think that was more for WNS fears than anything to protect hibernating or gestating bats.
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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby ArCaver » Jan 4, 2020 4:16 pm

Blanchard springs caverns in Fifty-Six, Arkansas has a Gray hibernaculum that numbered 487,000 last year. They close that part of the cave from Labor Day through Memorial weekend.
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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby trogman » Jan 14, 2020 6:59 am

struebe wrote:Excellent, thanks for the reminder about Carlsbad - but that section of the cave is not ever open for tours, is it?

Didn't know about Bear Gulch - will check it out.


You are correct- Carlsbad tours do not go into the area inhabited by the bats.

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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby amyacker » Jan 16, 2020 8:00 am

Bear gulch, What a great trail! the cave was a bit flooded when we were there but kids were super brave! totally worth the view at the reservoir. we didn't do the upper caves.
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Re: show caves with bat colonies?

Postby bobby49 » Jan 16, 2020 10:09 pm

At the last time that I went through the lower cave at Bear Gulch, the water was about knee deep, and it was cold.
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