YVLT Helps Eagles – and Bats – Soar!

Bat HouseEagle Scout Ian Savage and RRNP Caretaker Ryan Gelling showcase the luxurious new bat accommodations.

Seventeen-year old Eagle Scout Ian Savage stopped by the YVLT office this week to present us with his latest project, which he appropriately titled “Batman’s House.”

In search of a meaningful service project for the Eagle Scouts, Ian reached out to YVLT about the bat colony living at the Rehder Ranch Nature Preserve, which is believed to house one of the largest maternal bat roosts in Northwest Colorado.  After discussing his ideas with YVLT Executive Director Susan Dorsey, Ian set out to build houses for the 600+ bats that reside at the Rehder Ranch.

“First, I had to learn how bats live and what they would need; the kinds of living conditions these houses would have to provide,” explains Ian.  “I couldn’t believe how many insects the bats ate every day!”

Bat House Blueprints-page-001

After studying up on bats and logging in hours of research, Ian assembled a team of 15 Scouts to build five houses capable of supporting up to 300 bats each (“I was surprised to find out how tiny they are,” he says).  The intricate hand-build houses, shown above, are the product of over 65 hours of hard work.

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“Eagle Scout” is the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouts of America – a position Ian has been working towards since the fifth grade.  His next big project: after graduating from high school in two years, he hopes to earn a degree in microbiology fermentation science.  Thank you, Ian, for building new homes for our resident bats at the Rehder Ranch!

Interested in bat activity at YVLT’s Rehder Ranch Nature Preserve?  YVLT recently hosted a team of bat researchers at RRNP – click here to read more!