A Twilight for Bats


Submitted by Trebbe Johnson, Thompson, Pennsylvania: A Twilight for Bats

We offered our Global Earth Exchange on behalf of the Eastern Brown Bat, which has been dying in large numbers of the white-nose fungus.

We began at twilight, sitting in the small meadow behind our house, where we used to watch the bats flitting around in large numbers, eating their weight in insects. Looking up now and then at the blank silvery sky, we took turns sharing stories about bats:

  • Debby remembered hiding under the covers in the big old Maine house she grew up in as bats that nested in the attic flew around her bedroom.
  • Pete related how the principles of echolocation that bats use to navigate are now being adapted to help blind people.
  • Andy said that he had accidentally killed a bat when he was eight years old and still feels badly about it.
  • Marianna and Cailtin had spent the afternoon looking up bats on the internet and talked about how cute baby bats are.
  • Rachel described being both frightened and fascinated as a bat flew gracefully and purposefully up and down the stairs of her home.
  • I told a story from Navajo tradition about how Bat Woman helped the warrior twins get to the home of their father, the Sun, by flying them there in her basket.

Afterwards, we made this fanciful RadJoy Bat out of rhubarb leaves and flowers in the garden. Then, as the rain began to fall, we went inside to have dessert.