Field Note: BiodiversityWorks Finds Homes for Bats and Snakes

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To: Bluedot Living

From: BiodiversityWorks

Subject: BiodiversityWorks is Digging into our Mission

Over the last year, BiodiversityWorks began to dig into our mission in new ways. With a federal grant, we are building and testing underground hibernation sites for bats because the dirt crawl spaces and cinder block foundations under houses where they typically hibernate are disappearing when older houses are sold and demolished. Attracting bats to these new safe, underground hibernation sites is the next step in our work.

We are also creating underground hibernation sites for snakes in protected areas so that they do not have to cross roads to find winter shelter. Black racers, the Island’s largest snake, were common across the Vineyard 40 years ago, but today they are only found along the South Shore due to habitat loss and the proliferation of roads where they are killed by vehicles. These snakes are harmless to humans and help us by eating many mice that carry ticks. While some may not see snakes and bats as charismatic species, they are part of the web of life that supports all species.

These proactive projects will reduce bat and snake mortality associated with the development boom on the Island.If you would like to support our work conserving the Island’s wildlife, visit our website to make a donation or learn more: bit.ly/BIODIV-DONATE.

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