Having decreased to lower than half of its population since it was listed as endangered in 1967 means that the USFWS needs to implement further protections for this bat, such as revoking permits to allow massive highway projects right through the prime range of the Indiana Bat.
Some might wonder why a bat needs to be protected. But what a terrible world we would live in if this species, which eats hundreds to thousands of insects every day, including moths, biting flies and mosquitoes, were to become extinct.
The insects that the Indiana Bat eats, such as mosquitoes and biting
flies, cause disease among humans and damage crops.
By losing this natural means of controlling insects, we could greatly
increase the prevalence of disease and crop damage in
This species is under horrific assault to its habitat. Because the need to protect this habitat is getting in the way of the destruction of the last old forest stands that we have left, some right-wing wackos want to gut the endangered species act, and de-list species that are in decline. There can be no question that this idea to delist the Indiana Bat is based solely on politics, and not science.
We need more protections to stop the fast decline of this species, and to restore it to a healthy population.
Maternity colonies of the endangered Indiana Bat use mature forests to raise their young. These forests are fast being destroyed.
For example the Nelsonville Bypass would go through prime
Indiana Bat habitat in southeast
The USFWS should stop issuing incidental take notices for this bat that is in such fast decline. Allowing massive highway projects through the last old forest expanses that these bats need is ludicrous if the Endangered Species Act is to have any merit.
We do not know what other species of animals, plants or
microorganisms we are also pushing to extinction through the massive destruction
and fragmentation of mature forests in
Proponents of gutting the endangered species act and delisting the Indiana Bat are thus acting against efforts to find the cure for cancer, Aids and every other disease known to humanity today.
“It is not known how many alternate roosts are required to support a colony within a particular area, but large tracts of mature forest, containing large, mature trees increase the probability that suitable roost trees are preset.”
The study found that “
Female Indiana Bats arrive to the
The bats depend upon insects at the tree crowns
These endangered species need old growth trees, which have exfoliating
bark that the bats use to raise their young. As
these bats can eat thousands of mosquitoes a day, losing the
Some think who cares about a bat. But
we do not know what the world would be without this natural insect control.
Compared to many areas, the outdoors in southeast
An ESI report prepared for the USFWS for the impacts of the Nelsonville
Bypass on the Indiana Bat found that maternity colonies of
To get the exfoliating bark that the
Private lands that represent the bulk of what the ESI claims as suitable
habitat in the region are fast being logged.
Also, though the report found that adjacent habitat on the
The report calls
While some may argue that the opportunistic nature of the Indiana Bat, as they have been found to use mine portals to replace lost cave habitat means they are adaptable and could be delisted. But this mine habitat is not being recreated. New mining techniques of strip mining and longwall mining, by far the most commonly used methods today, do not leave mine openings. And room and pillar mines are now required to close mine entrances, and do not create bat habitiat.
Furthermore, all the cave or mine habitat in the world cannot replace the summer roosting habitat of mature forests. These old forests are also major tourist attractions, and sequester carbon dioxide. So while some anti-environmentalists with blinders on, who can only hear the words of the logging, development, mining and highway building interests and their campaign contributions, may say that the listing of the Indiana Bat as endangered costs money, the reverse is likely true.
By protecting habitat for the Indiana Bat, we protect habitat for people seeking the wisdom and ambiance of an old-growth forests. We protect species that, like the Pacific Yew in the Northwest, may hold the key to curing cancer. And we protect a species that naturally eats thousands of insects a day, insects that then do not bite people and give them disease, and destroy crops costing who knows how much money.
Protecting the Indiana Bat also protects critical wetland and woodland
stream habitat, that protect who knows how many other species, provide habitat
for game species such as ducks and geese, and tourism attractions.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found that “wetlands and streams
with well-developed wooded riparian corridors also contribute to high-quality
habitat” for the
The ESI May 15, 2003 report on
Anyone suggesting that this specie be delisted should be studied for conflicts of interest. Most of the major push in delisting species come from those wanting to destroy habitat, such as the logging companies and the spotted owl. They have a conflict of interest, and their arguments are not based on neutral science, and should be dismissed. That is a basic principal in democracy, and it should be practiced particularly with environmental laws, where the common good and the survival of future generations is at stake.
Anyone advocating that a species be delisted that is in major decline, is
arguing against basic fact, and should be ridiculed as the failed regime that
was just voted out this last November (such as Pombo in
Any sane regulator would look at the basic facts, that the Indiana Bat is in decline and it should be given further protections.
For the Nelsonville bypass in
The USFWS also failed to consider the fragmentation of the habitat, or
the fact that the