Bats Make Cave Off-Limits

Written by on August 16, 2019

Explorers be aware – there’s a cave in the Big Horn mountains that’s off limits temporarily.

On a recent trip to Tongue River Cave, biologists discovered a maternity roost of Townsend’s big-eared bats. According to Sara Evans Kirol with the Bighorn National Forest, because this species is considered sensitive, the Forest Service is mandated to shut down the cave in this instance.

The Townsend’s bats are medium-sized, about 4 inches long, with extremely long, flexible ears. According to experts, a maternity colony may range in size from 12 bats to 200. The National Park Service reports that the species has declined due to direct killing by people, and because of destruction or disturbance of roost sites.


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