Friday Film:: City Bats

friday filmA new feature on The Metropolitan Field Guide will be a video post every other week. There are a lot of great videos out there about urban wildlife, urban biodiversity and many other topics related to the design of urban wildlife habitat. Some are art films while others are documentaries, lectures and discussions.

To kick off this feature, the first video features the Congress Avenue Bridge Mexican free-tailed bats in Austin, the largest urban bat colony in North America. The bats leave the crevices at dusk every night from March through November while hundreds of people line up along the bridge, shores and take river cruises to watch the bats swarm away from the bridge. This city has embraced the bats and as a result it has become a big tourist attraction and a well-known urban wildlife spectacle. This video is a clip…

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Foragings:: The latest news, resources, designs and more

News

  • London’s a real hoot after dark, say twitchers:: This article discusses another aspect of London nightlife, the owls. Owl Prowl, taking place in August is run by the the London Wildlife Trust and aims to survey urban owls to raise awareness of the city’s owl population.
  • Troops called in to scare storks with eye contact:: A fascinating article about a conflict between birds and an air show and a creative, non-violent solution found where people stared at the storks making them uncomfortable enough to leave the area.
  • ‘Weeds’: In Defense Of Botany’s Cockroach:: This NPR story features a look at a new book by British nature author Richard Mabey and discusses the resilience of weeds in post-industrial wastelands and war sites. He also discusses that if we understood the ecology of plants a little better, we may have a better response to those that cause us…

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Foragings:: The latest news, resources, designs and more

News

  • A bird sanctuary in the city:: This is a really interesting look at habitat on the Ateneo Loyola Heights campus in Manila in the Philippines with a surprising number of birds found just steps from the buildings on campus. It also acts as one of the few green corridors in the city and as a valuable educational tool and several participants in recent bird walks included a diversity of attendees including faculty, students and administrators.
  • Water firm’s special thank you gift to city school pupils:: Another article about campus habitat, this time in the form of a pond which provides habitat and a valuable learning opportunity for the primary school students.
  • New ‘landscape scale’ approach to conservation:: This insightful article from the Telegraph discusses the shift in conservation from simply fenced-off nature reserves to instead thinking of a large scale landscape approach where everything is connected. This new approach looks…

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Foragings:: The latest news, resources, designs and more

News

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Foragings:: The latest news, resources, designs and more

News

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Bat Trail – Interactive Website

The Bat Conservation Trust in the U.K. has a fantastic resource about urban bat habitat on their website. It’s called the Bat Trail and it’s an interactive website that features the many urban habitats and elements that can be beneficial to bats. It’s aimed at bats of the U.K., but the information is still relevant for many bats. It would be wonderful though to see this replicated specifically for North American bats.

There is a lot of information packed into this small landscape including tips, how to watch bats and videos. Among the habitats featured are:

  • Modern Building: Describes the elements of construction that can be beneficial for bats including hanging tiles, window sills and cavity walls. It also describes the general spaces that bats like, such as the south or west sides of buildings where it’s warmer.
  • Street Lights: Discusses how they can be both good and…

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