Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Bat Class

Last week we had an opportunity to return to Meramec Caverns for a Bat class with a new Homeschooling group I have been trying out.  The family toured this cave a few months ago and the kids enjoyed it so they were willing to go again.

First we completed the tour of the caverns and to our surprise we actually saw a brown bat flying around.  I couldn't get its picture as it was going too fast but it made all the kids very excited.

Just a pretty picture of the cave lit up:)

However we later found out, from the tour guide that if a bat wakes up in the winter from hibernation it will probably go outside looking for food and not find any.  The bat will have used up most of its fat supplies and die:(

Here the kids were looking at a bat skeleton and had a worksheet to fill out and identify bat parts.  The guide briefly went into the functions of each part.

While the topic mostly stayed on the kinds of ants we have here in MO, of which I was told is only 4, on displayed was a Vampire bat.  

Next we learned a little about the bats found in the MO area of which there are fourteen.  We also heard about a disease that is killing bats called the white-nose syndrome.  Fortunately in this cave the bats are not infected with this disease.  Since it is a privately owned cave they are not currently doing any conservation activities with the bats:( 

Kids got to see a brown bat in a glass case.
It was a nice day out and we met some more homeschoolers.  Unfortunately for my oldest most of the field trips we go on we are noticing they are filled with younger children so the subject matter is gear to that age.  She informed me after the class that she hadn't learned anything about bats she didn't already know, except the names of the bats that live in MO.


  1. Looks like a good trip! I am noticing that local to us a lot of the trips are gear towards younger children - Hannah isn't 10 yet and still finds she is the oldest at most of the Portsmouth are activities. Luckily we've for a new group just over in West Sussex with a lot more children her age. It's hard as they get older isn't it!

  2. Another interesting adventure I see. Well when we lived in Washington we had bats or a bat the lived in the corner of our front porch. It scared me at first but they didn't ever really fly around when we were near. They are interesting creatures for sure.
    I hope you find a home schooling group that you all enjoy.

  3. Interesting! Here, bats often carry rabies. If a family finds a dead bat in their house, they usually get rabies shots as a precaution. Do you have that problem there? I'd be kind of afraid to go in a bat cave, just because of that. I know they are great for capturing insects, but I just like to stay well away from them.