Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Bats of the Congress Ave. Bridge

I spent last night in downtown Austin so I could attend a conference today on sequestering CO2 underground. My hotel was two blocks off of 6th St., live entertainment capitol of the world. Rock, reggae, jazz and even country/western music sailed out every door...

So I went to look at 700,000 bats instead.





The bats under Austin, TX's Congress Ave. bridge are a big tourist attraction. From late March until until early fall hundreds of thousands of bats move into the creveses underneath this bridge. At sunset they all take off looking for food. It's most impressive. The river banks and the bridge's sidewalk are filled with people waiting for the bats to emerge. Pretty much a nightly, bat-themed party! Late in the summer the bats come out at dusk and so you can easily see them as a big, dark, squeeky cloud (assuming you can see bat squeeks). Last night they didn't come put until it was full dark. The only way we could see them was by the flash of cameras. Luckily, there were dozens of cameras going off for the whole 30-minute bat launch. I took dozens of pictures, the ones above were probably the best.

Oh, and here's on of the Texas State capitol as seen from the bridge.
The capitol is the capitolly looking thing at the bottom center of the picture.

Peace be with you.

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