The MBWG’s 14th Annual Mist Net Event was held in Amite and Pike counties in south Mississippi. Twenty participants representing Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana gathered at Percy Quin State Park in McComb, Mississippi for two nights of mist netting. Although the first night was slow, the group netted eight sites and collected data on twenty-one bats. Species captured included evening bats, eastern red bats, and big brown bats. Thanks to all those who made this event possible, including our event sponsors, the Smith Family of Natchez and Chester Martin of Vicksburg.
Promoting bat research, conservation, and education
Families got to visit the Mississippi Bat Working Group booth at the 2017 NatureFest, hosted by the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science in Jackson. Over 1,400 people attended NatureFest and learned about Mississippi’s natural resources this year! Volunteers and staff from the Museum provided visitors with the opportunity to see live bats, and the MBWG also brought their photo station and fun activities for kids. Thanks for all who stopped by to learn more about Mississippi’s wildlife!
The Mississippi Bat Working Group held its 2017 membership and business meeting at the Museum of Natural Science on Thursday, February 9. Over 40 biologists and land managers from state and federal conservation agencies, natural resource graduate students, wildlife rehabilitators, environmental educators, master gardeners, and other bat enthusiasts attended. There was a full agenda, including research presentations, updates for on-going monitoring within the State, report-outs on the MBWG’s activities and accomplishments in 2016, and planning for the upcoming year.
Tentative plans for outreach events include hosting a booth at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science’s NatureFest on April 1 and the Mississippi State University Extension Service’s Wildlife Festival and BioBlitz in Tupelo, MS on April 22. The 2017 mist net event will be held in September and potential locations include Copiah or Adams County. A 2nd Annual Culvert Blitz will be organized for January 2018.
MBWG members have provided their bat knowledge to Creature Comforts, a radio show produced by Mississippi Public Broadcasting. Our most recent appearances on Creature Comforts have been on March 31, 2016 and October 27, 2016. To check out these podcasts and more, visit MPB Online.
MBWG members hosted a ‘chiroptophobia’ booth at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science’s ‘Park After Dark’ event on Friday, October 28. Participants trick-or-treated throughout the museum and learned about the science behind their fears through fun games, challenges, and hands-on exploration stations. Museum staff and volunteers hosted 2,574 kids and adults at this annual event. (Photo courtesy of Mississippi Museum of Natural Science.)
MBWG hosted a booth at Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge’s WOLF (Wildlife Outdoor Learning) Festival on September 24. Families, scout troops, and others from the community came out to the event and learned about Mississippi’s native wildlife. The MBWG booth featured an informational display along with a mist netting activity where kids could participate in a mock mist-net event. Catching plastic bats, weighing, measuring, and releasing them gave participants an opportunity to learn about Mississippi’s bats and how biologists study them.
The Mississippi Bat Working Group met in Grenada, MS for two nights of mist netting on September 20-21, 2016. Twenty three biologists, teachers, and other bat enthusiasts netted at Malmaison Wildlife Management Area and Tallahatchie National Wildlife Refuge in Tallahatchie County, covering four sites each night. A total of 32 bats representing three species were netted over the course of the event. We’d like to thank all of the people who came out to net and make our 13th mist net event a successful one! (more…)
The Southeastern Bat Diversity Network’s “Multi-State Bat Blitz” will be held from August 24-31, 2016. The Blitz is a five-day window in the early fall where people throughout the Southeastern United States mist net in as many locations in each state as possible. The Bat Blitz is a great opportunity to not only collect more information on Mississippi’s bats, it is also a great outreach opportunity where members can invite the general public to learn more about bats and their conservation. Read more
Chester Martin, founder of the MBWG, explained the unique adaptations of bats for survival in a nocturnal world with a program entitled “The Amazing World of Bats” at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science. The event was well attended, with 120 participants including children and adults. The program included a question and answer session covering a wide range of topics.
On April 16, 2016, Becky Rosamond hosted a bat booth at the Trace Festival, hosted by the National Park Service’s Natchez Trace Parkway in Tupelo, MS. The event included a mist net demonstration and several bats were captured and released.