Langley goes ‘batty’ in fight against pests

For the second year in a row, Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS) is hosting a project called Going Batty, to encourage residents to monitor bat populations.

For the second year in a row, Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS) is hosting a project called Going Batty, to encourage residents to monitor bat populations.

This citizen science based program depends on the watchful eyes of many volunteers across Langley.

Bats are phenomenal mammals. They eat more than their weight in insects each day, providing an important control for local mosquito populations. With intense populations of mosquitoes occurring along the Fraser River and affecting the livability for nearby residents, there is strong interest shown in using bats as a biological control – which in turn reduces use of chemical pesticides that can have an affect on the biodiversity.

LEPS has hosted many successful citizen science programs to engage local residents in monitoring the health of our communities and once again are looking for interested volunteers to survey the goings-on of bats in Langley neighborhoods.

“Bats like to roost in house eaves and hollow trees,” says Nichole Marples, executive director at LEPS.

“It’s really interesting to watch them go about their business, eating insects and interacting with each other.”

She says there is a serious side to surveying bats: “This type of information will help us understand bat behaviours, further allowing us to work with bats by inviting them in to areas with high pest populations. We can do this by building bat boxes for them to roost in.”

If you are interested in participating in the monitoring program, contact Lina at 604-532-3517 or lazeez@tol.ca via email. More information is also available on the LEPS website, www.leps.bc.ca, under “Bat Monitoring.”

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