Saturday, January 14, 2006

Newt Love 1

No, those aren't bats. There is some bat content here - simmer down now, folks. I've spent the past week off and on helping out with a bat project. Yay! The idea is to put radio transmitters on some Pallid bats (Antrozous pallidus) at an East Bay park, to find out more about their behavior in the winter. It's really wonderful to have the opportunity to wander around in the moonlight in a beautiful park, with only the sounds of the owls to keep us company. Yes, that's right. No bat sounds. No bats. On the second night, we managed to find one bat, probably a Pallid, in a known summer roost. We weren't able to catch it to find out why it was there all by itself (they are very social.) It's mysterious why the bats have disappeared. The resident naturalist said she'd heard them in the building they use for a roost last month, but this month they were nowhere to be found. In addition to the calling owls (Great Horned and Western Screech) we were treated to a cornucopia of newts. These California newts were frolicking in a pond, around 11pm, under a full moon. More newt info...

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