Green's Catheral Bat Count 2015
Date: February 20, 2015
Personnel: Jon Woltz, Matt Brasher, Steve Beleu
Report by Jon Woltz
We had a good caving day. On Friday, I thought we'd have to head for home right after the bat count to avoid the winter weather predicted for Saturday afternoon. But the bad weather held off and we were able to do the bat count and some more exploring in Cherylsbad too.
We started the bat count a little after 11:00 and spent about an hour and a half counting. There were quite a few bats, but I really couldn't say whether there was a significate change in the numbers from last year. The bats loook healthy; no dead bats and no signs of disease. Matt brought his DSLR and took some photos of the bat clusters and Greene's selenite formations.
Since we tought we wouldn't have time to survey Cherylsbad after the bat count, we didn't have the survey intruments. We went back into the right hand passage to take another look at the side passages we poked into last month. I discovered that I could wiggle my way out of that skylight that Matt and Dale had looked at in January. Like we thought then, it opens into one of the sinks we explored when we were looking for Cheryllsbad. The sink has a very steep leaft-covered slope that terminates in a hole that drops straight down into the passage. I had to move a couple of rocks to make the skylight big enough for me, but may not be possible for anyone with wider shoulders to get out.
Matt and I also pushed the low stream passage until it started getting mucky and tight. There's still passage down there to be explored on a future trip, but we were all getting tired and concerned about the weather, so we called it a day a little before 4:00 p.m.
Total Count: Myotis velifer - 21, 311 Tricolor - 2
Click on any photo to see an enlarged version.