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BATS Magazine

VOLUME 17, NO. 2 Summer 1999

On the Cover


In 1980, when about 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) began moving into Austin's Congress Avenue bridge in central Texas, news stories appeared nationally claiming that hundreds of thousands of rabid bats were invading and attacking citizens. Dire public health warnings quickly followed but were proven unfounded. With BCI's help, Austinites soon learned to appreciate and protect the bridge colony as a unique asset. From March through October each year, the bats are a vital part of the city's economy as they attract tens of thousands of tourists and consume up to 15 tons of insects a night, including many of the area’s most costly pests.

Photo by Karen Marks

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All articles in this issue:
On the Cover
Rabies: Economics vs. Public Safety
Q&A: Bats and Rabies
Bat World
Home Sweet Bridge
The Classroom Cave
Educators, Share Your Ideas
Andrea Peyton Donated Artwork
Wish List
BATS Back Issues Online
Look for "Masters of the Night: The True Story of Bats" at these locations:
Student Scholarships: Making a Difference for Bats and Biologists

Unless otherwise noted, all images are copyright ©Merlin D. Tuttle and/or ©Bat Conservation International