Building houses for bats

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By Evan Kutz

Peter Fowler is a student at Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, and serves as an executive board member with the Bat Association of MSU. The group has partnered with the MSU Zoological Students Association to host community bat box building workshops around Lansing, Michigan. These boxes serve has homes for bats, and can help restore populations in urban areas where many natural habitats and forested areas have been cleared.

The groups recommend to anyone who is interested in installing a bat box in their area to reference Bat Conservation International’s guidelines for how to build bat boxes or where to place one.

Bat boxes are built with wood, and Fowler demonstrated how to do this cheaply by using recycled pallet boards. Volunteers have been able to build dozens of bat boxes using these materials.

On a dead tree in front of his home in Lansing, Fowler installed two boxes of different sizes. One is a “bachelor pad” style that offers room for up to twenty bats, and a larger one for even bigger bat families.

Watch this video to hear more about choosing a location for a bat box and what it can offer both neighborhood communities and bats.

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