Mason County News
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Bat Cave Report
Wednesday, October 8, 2008 • Posted October 8, 2008

Did you happen to notice the article in the news, “Broken Bats Cause Heated Debate?” There can be a whole page of words, but if B A T comes together to make the word bat, then I sit up and take notice. I quickly clicked in for more info to find out that it was talking about wooden bats breaking at baseball games, pieces flying off and causing severe injuries.

All of this heated debating causes me to wonder who out there is “DEBATING HEATEDLY OVER FLYING BATS” that do not cause severe injuries. Everyone has been doing there homework, because we see such a huge change in attitudes about bats.

This season we have had many ex-bat haters express their appreciation for the tiny little creatures who fly the night skies around Mason, Texas. At the Eckert James River Bat Cave Preserve we carry on an Eckert family tradition of helping people of all ages see for themselves that these bats are not little vampires just waiting to suck the blood out of someone’s neck, or to give everyone rabies who come within 10,000 feet of them.

The Nature Conservancy has been entrusted with this monumental task of education and preservation. They gladly “stepped up to the plate” to accept this wonderful challenge. Previous misconceptions were quickly righted and those who have visited The Eckert James River Bat Cave Preserve take home a very healthy attitude about the lives of the Mexican Free-tailed bats who call Mason their summer home.

For all of you who are bat lovers of the “baseball type”, I would like to let you know that the Mexican Free-Tailed bat is the original “Babe Ruth” of slamming home runs. When the Mexican Free-Tailed bat is out eating and sees a bug ahead of her, whether by sight or echolocation, she passes it up and uses her long tail to “slam a homerun”. Using her tail like a baseball bat, she hits the bug and sends it flying into the part of her wing called the “sweet spot”. She then reaches over and grabs the bug with her mouth and eats it on the fly. The original “BASEBALL BAT”. And hey, these gals are all Babes and Ruth is my mother’s name, not my dad’s, so….the heated debate continues….Who was the original “BABE RUTH?”.

We are in the final inning at the Eckert James River Bat Cave Preserve for this season. Our team will be headed south to Mexico for playoffs there. I guess that we should call this their “home run”.

We still have some very wonderful emergences, but they have decreased in time. The bats are emerging around 7:34 P.M. and calling it a game by around 7:50 P.M.

Tickets at the gate are $5:00 for persons six years of age and up, children five years and younger are free. Sorry, there are no hotdog or popcorn hawkers, but we sometimes see red tail hawks, peregrine falcons, and great horned owls.

You don’t have to drive to New York to see the greatest game on earth, just mosey on out to the Eckert James River Bat Cave Preserve….a mere 35 minutes from downtown Mason and see what everyone is so excited about. We’ll save a front row seat for you!

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