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How Boy Scouts Are Helping Us Understand Bat Populations

Bats in DeSoto County, MS, are kind of a mystery. Thanks to Boy Scout Troop 41, the county is starting to better understand the bat species there.

“As far as we know, no one has ever done a study in this area,” Mississippi Bats Working Group (MBWG) volunteer Becky Rosamond explained to DeSoto Times. “We know very little about the bats in DeSoto County. We have a good idea because there has been work done in surrounding counties, but not here.”

The MBWG teamed up with Troop 41 to net some of the various bat species in the area. The experience has been new for the Scouts and volunteers alike, as netting close to human civilization is not the norm.

Mississippi Bats Working Group and Boy Scout Troop 41 worked together to study bat populations in southern DeSoto County. (Photo: Margaret Hicks)
Mississippi Bats Working Group and Boy Scout Troop 41 worked together to study bat populations in southern DeSoto County. (Photo: Margaret Hicks)

 

Netting involves large mist nets held up by poles. Bats fly into the nets, giving the team a chance to study them.

Eagle Scout Fisher V. explained the netting contraption simply: “It’s like a giant hair net.”

While this may be the first time these Scouts are directly involved in the observation of bat species, their efforts are part of the BSA’s long history of learning about wildlife.

“This is a great opportunity to get Scouts out in the environment and show them how they have a direct impact on their environment,” Scout Leader Danny Van Pelt told DeSoto Times. “Scouting and conservation go hand in hand. Teaching boys to respect nature is at the heart of Scouting.”

Learn more about how Scouts aided in the study and what they found by reading the full story on DeSoto Times.

Gina

This blog is managed and written by staff of the Communications Department of the Boy Scouts of America.