The Bats of the Yolo Causeway Marvel Onlookers with Nightly ‘Batnadoe’

Flickr/Bev Sykes

Every summer just west of Sacramento, roughly a quarter of a million migrating Mexican free-tailed bats settle at the Yolo Causeway. When they come out to feed, the result is a beautiful ‘batnadoe’ filling the sky of the small, winged mammals dancing in unison and drawing onlookers all summer long.

Built over a hundred years ago, the Yolo Causeway takes motorists over the marshes of the Yolo Bypass. In the 1970’s, the bats began to take residence in the expansion joints of the bridge, giving them ample shelter and warmth to give birth to baby bats and plenty of insect food to sustain the large population.

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That’s a lot of bats 🦇

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The Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area is an 8,000 acre wetlands, named one of the largest wetlands restoration projects in America, and it’s filled with bugs. As the sun begins to go down, the bugs come out and the skies are filled with long tubes of hungry bats feasting on the seemingly never ending food supply. The bats fly as high as 10,000 feet looking for food and look stunning in perfect formation in the process.

See some of the scenes of the ‘batnadoes’ at the Yolo Causeway:

Active NorCal

Northern California's Outdoor Digital Newsmagazine

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