Monday, July 11, 2011

Die-off of bats is growing

I'm sure you have heard about the die-off of honey bees, and how serious that can be for agriculture. Well there is an equally serious die-off going on, especially in the NE states. It involves bats, particularly the Little Brown Bat. And it is serious enough that those who know are worried about those and other bats becoming extinct in the NE.

Most people don't know that bats are important in pollinating crops. But most people know about bats' appetite for mosquitoes and other insects. I just read that 1 million bats (the approximate number of bats that have died from what is called white nose syndrome in the past couple years) will eat 660 metric tons of mosquitoes in 6 months; 1,200 tons in a year. And that does not count the other, crop destroying or disease carrying bugs they eat.

I'm not sure this post falls under the heading of "toxins", but I find the bat problem very interesting and scarey. And, BTW, the bat die-off has reached as far west as Oklahoma.

One last thought: How many mosquitoes are there in a pound?