Our bat house is an important conversation piece even though it is still uninhabited. Bats are in as dire a straight these days as bees. Many of them have died off due to white-nose syndrome (a fungus disease), while bees have succumbed tocolony collapse syndrome en masse. Bats are important insect population regulators and can eat their weight in mosquitos and other insects on a daily basis (wow, I would need to eat 130 pounds of food each day). We like to give afflictions fancy names. But what is the real cause behind these massive die offs?
Why do we humans become so sick in later life with cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and heart disease? Many signs point to diet, toxins and a stressful unnatural lifestyle. Studies into white-nose and colony collapse syndrome have also indicated that toxins aka pesticides aka neonicotinoids may weaken these small creatures' tiny immune systems. Our toxic agricultural practices are upsetting the apple cart aka ecosystem balance. Not only is it likely that our pollinators and insect population regulators are dying for those reasons, but their die offs are causing further ecosystem imbalances down the line because we'll have trouble pollinating our produce and the insect population will grow out of whack (watch out for Zika and West Nile).
Luckily many bats live in the cliff next to us. Bats flutter around at dusk on warm summer nights, when most birds have settled in for the night. Have you seen any bats lately?