“Bats are amazingly awesome animals.”
This is the motto of 2nd Chance Wildlife, an animal rehabilitation organization that is currently working to save the bats of Ohio. 2nd Chance Wildlife is the largest organization for wildlife rehabilitation in the state. It is nonprofit, and it caters to any animal in need.
White-nose syndrome is a condition that has killed over 5.5 million bats in North America, according to whitenosesyndrome.org. This is a problem because bats are invaluable to the ecosystem. They help with insect control, pollination of flowers, seed dispersal, and more.
Carolyn Vining is an Assistant Professor Educator at UC East who teaches classes on emergency medical services. Vining is also an active member in 2nd Chance Wildlife. She has housed possums, woodchucks, squirrels, and more, taking care of ones that are sick or injured until they are well enough to be released back into the wild. It can be very difficult to release some of them, she tells The Lantern. It is easy to get attached to the ones with sweet temperaments.
Now, Vining has the goal of building 100 bat houses before the end of the summer. These bat houses will be placed all around southern Ohio, in sunny areas fifteen feet above the ground.
Building and placing all of the bat houses before the fall is a tall order, but it is not impossible. Donations from the public are always encouraged and can help 2ndChance do more for the bat population.
Items needed are:
- Wood: 1/2 inch or thicker pieces of exterior plywood, cedar, and poplar
- Galvanized screws
- Flat exterior water-based paints and stains
- Old shingles
- 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick polyethylene plastic mesh
Donations to 2nd Chance are all tax deductible. If you have supplies you would like to donate, or if you are interested in helping with this project, contact Carolyn Vining at (513) 429-8608 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.