Rare Bat Colonies Killed as Israel Destroys Army Posts

Hundreds of Trident Bats Killed in Cave-Like West Bank Bases

haaretz

By Zafrir Rinat (Haaretz)

Published July 10, 2013.

Israel has demolished abandoned military posts in the Jordan Valley that housed hundreds of protected bats, despite understandings with the Israel Nature and Parks Authority.In the process, hundreds of bats were probably buried alive. The ministry says it asked the parks authority to take responsibility for the sites, but that these requests were ignored.

“Hundreds of Trident bats, mostly males, were buried alive in the two demolished posts. These posts housed between 500 and 600 bats,” said bat expert Eran Amichai.

In recent years, experts discovered colonies of 12 different species at around a dozen abandoned army posts in the Jordan Valley. The bats used the posts because they resembled natural caves.

“The two posts at Tel Yishmael were probably the most important sites for Trident bats,” Amichai said. “This species was once more common in many areas in Israel, but in recent years these habitats have become few and far between.”

After realizing the importance of the abandoned posts in the Jordan Valley, experts appealed to the Defense Ministry to declare the sites bat sanctuaries. The ministry promised that it would coordinate any activity in the area with the parks authority.

For more go to Haaretz



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