SW Oklahoma Bat Count 2010

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Once again our mighty cave explorers set out to the vast darkness underground to do the annual bat count for the Oklahoma Bat Count Census. This report covers the SW Oklahoma Bat Count (The Jester Cave Bat Count). Participants: Duane Del Vecchio. Dave McDermott, John Talbot, Jason Talbot, (Son of Jason Talbot), Lil Town, John VanDyke, JT Van Dyke. Report by Duane Del Vecchio (D)
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Yes..time again for our annual bat count. This time I got to do SW Oklahoma (the Jester Cave System) Seems every year I flop between NW OKlahoma and SW Oklahoma... no problem ...enjoy the variety!! <grin>
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Jim came out to see us off! (Standing left in picture). Good to have a send off! As it has snowed, sleeted, rained, and every kind of percipatation known to man this last month, we hiked to the cave! Not that the mud would have stoped our vechiles, but the road is really bad! It was muddy and a bit icy from the left over snow.
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Should be a good bat count as it's been pretty cold these past couple of months! We had a new counter this year...Jason's son joined us. Him and JT and it finally dropped our average age of bat counters below 45!! <grin>
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Our leader and mentor...John... grew up in these parts and knows everything about the area! ... Getting harder to get bend over every year eh Dave? : )
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Oops... this critter didn't get out of the cave safely!! We entered the cave and had to get adjusted to the darkness before counting.. Wow... all the moisture was seeping into the cave and SOAKING the bats!
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How they can sleep that wet I don't know! Deep sleep!!! Teach me how to do that!! The cave temperature was about 48 degrees raising to 56 deeper into the cave... They sure do look like wet rats hanging to dry!
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Ahhh...finally got some dry mats of bats! This is what we're used to!! The remains of a bat... someone got eaten by a predicator! Lil navigating around the water...
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Condensation on a pip... very neat sometimes how the moisture beads on the pips. See...I actually cave!! Though I have no sense at all as I'm standing in 38 degree water!! Brrrr.. But I have to teach my buddy how to count bats no matter what the cost! <grin>
 

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Last updated: 2/13/10