Selman Bat Count - 2008

                                                        

Saturday, Feb. 23, 2008 - The annual Oklahoma Bat Count! Actually a week late! We had an ice storm last weekend plus about 2 inches of rain so the trip would not have worked! Two teams (Becky, Jon, and Sue and Duane, John, and Mark) went into University of Central Oklahoma property to assist the Univ. in doing a winter bat population count. The bats are in hibernation usually during this time of year and much easier to count. This report will be from the guys (D, John, and Mark) going from Square Sink Entrance to White Mountain to Skylight entrance to Betty's Chair and finally out Oooh Ahhh entrance. (full size pictures (2048 x 1536 pixels) on our COG Picture Gallery pages)

Click on any photo to see an enlarged version.

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Square Sink Entrance - The Start for this group to count bats at the Selman Cave Complex. We had our New Mexico friends coming on over to help out... Mark shown here... And our fearless leader (and dang good with bailing wire!) John.
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And your's truly D (ie..Duane), keeping count while the other two called out numbers. (while I took photos!) And here is the star of the show...the common cave bat of Oklahoma - Myotis Velifer. We start by taking the temp outside (42 degrees) and then inside the cave... it was warm here...near 50 in the air and rock (I just took the thermo out of my pocket for this picture!) <grin>
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We met a professor from UCO (Univ. of Central OKla) with a group of High School students interesting them in cave study for their future studies. It was pretty warm in the Square Shaft tunnels until we got to White Mountain where the temp dropped to 40 and the mats began! Myotis tend to cluster in big groups like this (called mats).
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You have to get in all kinds of positions to get counts and usually use extra light as they hide out in all kinds of cracks and cranny's! Your neck is a bit sore always looking up one way or another! And no mom... we can't stay clean in a cave!!!
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We had a lot of maps near Skylight entrance. One fell off of the ceiling and was crawling across the floor. You not only look up but down to see where you are going (and not to step on one that fell down!) John near Skylight entrance
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What Skylight looks like from the outside (taken later in the day!) Oh yeah... it got a lot colder here! (about 40 degrees) Hiding in a crevice..
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Close up of the same myotis D giving a close look... a 1 foot line is stretched out and we count how many bats are in that one foot line... Then we go 90 degrees for 1 foot and count how many bats are on that line
                                                        

Click on any photo to see an enlarged version.
(full size pictures (2048 x 1536 pixels) on our COG Picture Gallery pages)


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Last updated: 2/23/08