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Christmas Bat Count Reveals New Bats in Costa Rica

Costa Rica News – Every year, on the 11th and 12th of December, people from Panama to Mexico go outside for a very different type of event, the Christmas Bat Count.

hairy-legged vampire batsThe event is organized by the Central American Strategy for Bat Conservation and the Latin American and Caribbean Network for the Conservation of Bats.

Over 60 participants came out in Costa Rica, including biologists, volunteer firefighters, students, and even a 7 year old child. SINAC, UCR, OTS and Bat Jungle Projects were involved in the effort.

The search for bat species occurred in Santa Rosa National Park, La Amistad International Park, Tirimbina Biological Reserve, Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve, Palo Verde National Park, Monteverde, Barva Volcano National Park, Diria National Park and the Barra Honda National Park. This allowed observers to work in three ecosystems; rainforest, cloud forest and dry forest.

A total of 61 species were seen. Seven hairy-legged vampire bats were observed, which is not common in the country. Another surprise was that the fruit bat, which is usually in middle lands, was spotted in Guanacaste.

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