New York Bat Week begins Monday
State encourages preservation and protection of bat species
That’s right: it’s bat season, and you can help. Across New York State leading up to Halloween — Oct. 24 through the holiday — the Department of Environmental Conservation is stepping up to encourage the public to prevent the human disturbance of bats.
DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos advised all New Yorkers to avoid visiting caves or mines during the winter, where bats spend the cold months hibernating for spring and summer.
Human visitation to the sites where bats are hibernating, also referred to as ‘hibernacula,’ disturbs the bats. Since the arrival of White-Nose Disease, a fungus and disease with a collection of symptoms that causes bats’ noses to turn a whitish color, visitation during hibernation is even more threatening.
“Bats play an important role in our environment, helping control insect populations,” Commissioner Seggos said. “With Halloween on people’s minds, DEC is urging outdoor adventurers to protect New York’s bats by avoiding caves and mines altogether. Even the quietest cave visits will disturb bats hunkering down for the winter.”