Michigan-based business assists local schools and nature centers through live bat experience.
Bat Conservation Journal
Bloomfield Hills, Mich. — A statewide economic slowdown won’t hamper a select group of winged visitors from making their appointed rounds at Michigan schools and nature centers, thanks to generous support from Critter Catchers, Inc. This Michigan business established a $1,000 grant, which will be administered by the Organization for Bat Conservation (OBC). The contribution will enable the nonprofit organization — based at the Cranbrook Institute of Science in Bloomfield Hills — to offer supplemental funding toward OBC’s Live Bat programs, which bring students and educators much closer to the world’s only mammal capable of natural flight.
“Children have a keen interest in hands-on science, and the Organization for Bat Conservation’s live programs provide an opportunity to foster an interest in bat conservation at an early age,” said David Kugler, president, Critter Catchers, Inc. “While it’s well-known that bats can cause problems when they’re flying inside our homes, what’s less understood is the important role that they play in local neighborhoods. Michigan’s Brown Bats are tremendous insect eaters, consuming half their bodyweight in insects each night. Imagine the impact of a single bat house that contains a colony of 300 hungry insectivores. Bat colonies provide a natural way to reduce our reliance on pesticides.”
Bringing environmental educators into the classroom is proving to be increasingly difficult as school budget cuts increase, in direct response to a struggling economy. This grant will help ensure that children obtain a diverse education while sparking their natural curiosity for bats. Further information about Michigan bat species and safe bat removal practices can be found at: # bats.
“The Organization for Bat Conservation’s live animal program has received numerous awards” Kugler added. “Many of OBC’s bats have become stars in their own right, with appearances on ‘The Martha Stewart Show,’ a ‘National Geographic’ program and other televised events. As a result, these live animal programs are in demand, as a way to educate the public on the benefits of bats.”
To qualify for the grant, recipients must submit a letter of need and publicize receipt of the grant established by Critter Catchers, Inc.