Our Mission

Providing permanent sanctuary for non-releasable bats.

The protection and conservation of wild bat colonies.

Promoting the humane treatment of bats in captivity.

Educating the public about the importance of bats.

Training animal care professionals on the proper treatment of bats

Our Philosophy

We believe that great animal rescue organizations are judged not just by the scale of the work that they do, but by the impact that work has on the lives of the animals they rescue. We actively work with zoos, researchers and animal shelters to offer an alternative to death. Many of the bats in our care have lived terrible lives before coming to us and we provide the security and privacy they need to recuperate from their previous existence. We firmly believe that all living beings exist for their own reasons and have a right to a peaceful and happy life, just as humans do.

On that same note, the staff at Bat World Sanctuary follows a plant based diet and we do not serve animal-derived foods at events. Over 98% of the animals that suffer and die at the hands of humans are farmed animals, and animal agriculture is one of the leading threats to wildlife habitat. It is one of the largest sources of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions, causes habitat fragmentation and destruction, results in loss of biodiversity and species extinction, wastes huge amounts of water, and pollutes air and waterways for wildlife.

Sunshine, grooming in Amanda's hand. 1988

Our History

Bat World Sanctuary was founded after Amanda Lollar found an injured Mexican free-tailed bat laying on her back on a sidewalk in Mineral Wells, TX, in 1988. Believing the myths about bats, but not wanting the bat to suffer, she rescued the bat off the hot sidewalk in hopes of offering a quiet place to die in peace. Amanda then became curious about bats, but there was no internet back then, so she went to her local library to find more information. What she discovered was the complete opposite of everything she had grown up believing about bats. So, she named the little bat “Sunshine” and took her home in hopes of healing her wing and setting her free. 

During her short lifetime in captivity, Sunshine taught Amanda the enchanting language of bats and sparked her indelible love for this remarkable species. In 1991, Amanda chronicled Sunshine’s poignant story in her book, The Bat in My Pocket, A Memorable Friendship. In 1992, Amanda purchased a building to save the roosting site of 30,000 Mexican free-tailed bats. In 1994, Amanda founded Bat World Sanctuary, the organization’s first sanctuary for non-releasable bats. Hundreds of bats from around the world have found permanent refuge at this indoor, natural habitat facility. These non-releasable bats include those that have been used in research, retired from zoos, orphaned, permanently injured or confiscated from the exotic pet trade. Thousands of injured and orphaned bats have also been rescued and returned to their rightful place in the wild. Bat World is located just outside of Cool, Texas and serves as headquarters for the organization. Bat World Sanctuary has been involved in numerous conservation and rescue efforts over the last three decades, which includes providing workshops to bat rehabilitators around the world, collaborating with other bat rescue organizations, North American Universities, the US Center of Disease Control, Idaho Fish and Game, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Texas Parks and Wildlife and various state agencies throughout the US. Bat World Sanctuary is now expanding with the creation of rescue centers in Bulgaria, Italy Japan and Austria. The Sunshine Rescue Club was established in her name. Click here to join and help us save more precious bats!