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Posted on April 19, 2011

Butte County: Volunteers Build Bat Boxes to Help Population Grow

At the Lake Oroville State Recreation Area, about 50 volunteers celebrated Earth Day by building new homes – for bats.

Bat Box Builder Volunteers

Can they build it? Yes, PG&E volunteers can build bat boxes.

The volunteers, who included 15 PG&E employees, their families, friends and members of the community, worked in teams to assemble and decorate 20 bat boxes. They’ll be installed around the Loafer Creek Campground at Lake Oroville.

The boxes will provide a safe place for the bats to roost, which should result in a larger and healthier bat population in the park. The boxes also will provide an opportunity for park staff to observe the bats more closely and report on any changes to the population.

The Chico Enterprise Record wrote about the project, and quoted a state parks official about the benefits of bats.

“Campers are getting bitten by mosquitoes, and if we build boxes and encourage more bats to live here, there’s plenty of food,” Amanda Speed told the newspaper.

In addition to the bat-box assembly, all the volunteers were treated to a barbecue lunch and a very entertaining presentation on bats and their important role in the ecosystem by local bat expert David Wyatt.

Antoinette LeCouteur

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