13 thoughts on “Bat-o-Rama

  1. NEVER use a flash in a bat cave.
    This may disturb them, potentially making them leave the cave at times that are outside their normal flight times. Even worse disturbing them during their hibernation. Given their fragile status (white nose syndrome etc) this is irresponsible.

    1. For those who don’t know, a bat gate is a gate which bats can get through without problems (about 10cm grid, typically), but which even the under-nourished dwarf fraternity of cavers can’t get through. (Yes, there is such a fraternity. Many of whom are probably in S.Germany at the moment, looking for alternative routes. There’s a big shout on.)
      Often, the biggest difficulty about designing a good bat gate is ensuring that it can’t be opened (without a key) from the outside, but can be opened from the inside. There have been cases of people on exploration trips finding a new route into a cave with a bat gate … and finding themselves locked in. Facing 12 or 18 hours *more* of caving to go back out the way they got in … well the delicate souls of the typical cavers know how to use force when necessary. A lot of force.
      (And next weekend, the guys come back and install a better-designed bat gate ; we’re not Visigoths.)

        1. Bats aren’t much of an issue in Scottish caves, but a number of my buddies – from both Scotland and North Yorkshire – have had been involved with discovery and mapping of substantial caves in the Mendips and South Wales, so the subject is one that has come up in the pub from time to time. Particularly since the Yorkshire contingent includes several people with small engineering workshops, who have ended up making the things.

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