Because of You, They Live

On this Giving Day, September 20, 2018, we want to say THANK YOU. Your support has been critical to our mission of saving bats around the world.

Our Giving Day goal is lofty – $50,000 toward the lifetime care of “The Michigan 90”, fruit bats who were rescued earlier this year from dire conditions. Any amount you can give will help us save lives and will count towards North Texas Giving Day. Even $5, the cost of a fancy coffee, will mean more than you may realize. You can schedule a donation now, or donate on Giving Day tomorrow. An additional email will be sent tomorrow morning.

Thank you, in advance, for the lives that will be saved through your compassionate support. 


Here is the link to the LIVE FEED DUNK TANK, where we promise to make this very special for our donors! Each staff member will get a throw for every $1,000 received. The more you donate, the soggier we get!



Here is a summary of what your donations will provide for the bats:

$25 = 1 box of bananas (312 boxes needed annually)
$50 = 1 box apples (364 needed annually) or 1 box sweet potatoes (104 annually)
$100 = 2 boxes of pears (104 needed annually)
$250 = 40,000 meal worms (24 needed annually)
$750 = 5 days of food for both the fruit and insect eating bats
$1,500 = 10 days of food and medication for the sanctuary bats & those we rescue
$4,000 = 30 days of food and medication for the sanctuary bats & those we rescue
Thank you for watching, everyone!

North Texas Giving Day – this is where your money goes

As most of you know, North Texas Giving Day is on Thursday, September 20th! This year we are trying to raise $50,000 toward our ultimate goal of $250,000 for the lifetime care of the Michigan 90.

In addition to supporting The Michigan 90 with your donation, we also have a special Dunk Tank event planned with the staff of Bat World Sanctuary taking turns to dunk their boss, Founder and President Amanda Lollar. We will broadcast the dunking via Facebook Live and on this page at batworld.org. In addition to THAT, don’t forget that you can also watch us LIVE from 8am until 11am-noon CST on this link. Please tune in for the fun!

On a more somber note, we are also asking for donations to be made in Memory of Peekaboo, who was among the first to greet The Michigan 90 when they arrived.

Even though she is gone, Peekaboo will forever be a part of everything we do at Bat World Sanctuary.
The videos below highlight just some of the work we have done for bats this year. Another reminder will be sent on Wed., the 19th as well as the morning of Giving Day.

Thank you, in advance, for all you allow us to do for the bats with your support.




Trash Can Baby, Statler’s Tree-House & More

Summer is coming to a close and we are finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. This has been a grueling orphan season with non-stop calls and rescues throughout the months of June and July. We rescued over 300 adult and orphaned bats over a two-month period, as well as assisting in dozens of rescues throughout the US. The video below is of the last three juvenile free-tailed bats being tested for flight before they were released. Bats must sustain flight for a full 10 minutes and be able to dip and swoop before they are deemed releasable.  One of the three bats in flight is Echo, who was going to be thrown into the trash before a Good Samaritan rescued her and brought her to us.

We were lucky to be featured on The Dodo,  a site with over 20 Million followers. Here is a video they created of our rescue work.

The Michigan 90 continue to thrive in their new home. Below is a video of 33 year-old Statler’s progress and the tree house we created for him thanks to your support.

Bat World Sanctuary is now joining forces with ReWild to help save bats in South Africa. ReWild has changed their name to Bat World ReWild (BWRW) to represent this exciting new venture. South African bats are in dire need of help; together we will be able to save more bats and help BWRW play a much bigger role in bat conservation in South Africa. Please join Director Jane Burd at Bat World ReWild and stay tuned for updates.

September 20, 2018 is North Texas Giving Day! This year we will be raising funds to help us with the lifetime care of the Michigan 90. Please mark your calendars and please consider a donation on September 20th.

This year we hope to raise $50,000, with a special treat in store for our supporters if we make that goal. More to come on Giving Day so please stay tuned!

Lots of Summer News

Matching Challenge Grant Met!
We are so excited to announce that thanks to our wonderful supporters we met the generous $15,000 challenge grant with a month to spare! The funds were granted by a wonderful couple, Gladys Cofrin and Daniel Logan, and will be used for the lifetime care of The Michigan 90.

Update on the Michigan 90

This update is on Bella (in particular). She is an orphaned short-tailed fruit bat, one of the 90 rescued from the now-defunct OBC. Bella’s mother abandoned her (likely due to the stress of the transfer) so she was hand-raised until she was old enough to rejoin her mom and the rest of the colony. Click here to watch her story.

Fire Safety for the Sanctuary

We have been saving for a sprinkler system for the facility, but that plan became financially unfeasible after rescuing the Michigan 90. However, when one door closes, another opens! We received a generous donation from Lynn Hochstetter which allowed us to purchase Barricade Fire Gel, a system that is used during wildfires (our greatest danger). Now, instead of only protecting the main facility from fire, we will be able to protect our bat castle and our caretakers residence as well.

Summer Rescue Videos

Click here to watch videos of some of the orphaned and injured bats we have rescued this summer. Included is footage on saving a baby bat from certain death, feeding orphaned red bat pups, and a tiny princess rescued at our bat castle. Rescues are coming in daily so there are more videos to come!


Summer Workshops and  Internships
This summer we hosted Alessandra Tomassini from Tutela Pipistrelli, a bat rescue group in Rome, Italy; and Taylor Driscoll, who is attending the Royal School of Veterinary Studies in Scotland. We also held our 30th workshop on the rehabilitation of insectivorous bats. To date over 200 participants from 24 states and canada have attended our workshops.

Keeping Wild Bats Safe this Summer
Summertime is busy for everyone, including bats. Baby season for our North American bats starts in May and ends in early September, depending on the species. Here are a few tips you can use to help save the lives of the battie buddies living in your own neighborhood.


Bat Castle Repair
Our bat castle developed some major cracks after the ground shifted and settled. Most of our land is typical Texas red clay so shifting occurs occasionally. We called in a foundation expert and joists were applied to one side and one end of the castle. Because the other side and end sits on solid rock, there is no danger of the foundation shifting again. Thanks to donor support we were able to use a portion of our emergency funds to cover this critical repair. For more information on the bat castle, click here.

Sunshine Rescue Club
This has been one of the busiest summers we have had in years, mostly due to the renovations occurring in a nearby town. Bats once occupying old buildings have lost their homes and moved into roosts in other buildings, causing severe overcrowding. The horrific heat we are experiencing, combined with the overcrowding, has caused bats to become grounded. Many heat-exhausted bats are found clinging weakly to the outside of buildings. We have rescued up to 20 bats DAILY this week alone. If you would like to support our rescue efforts please consider joining the Sunshine Rescue Club. Click here to join and help us save bats!

New Bat Goodies!

Not only do we have lots of new items in our store (100% of the proceeds help us rescue bats!), but we have teamed up with batgoods.com, a site that has bat products galore! Choose “BWS” at checkout and each purchase you make will generate a donation to Bat World Sanctuary! Please check out our new goodies here, and click here to visit batgoods.com.

Trapped Bats, Part 2 , Michigan 90 Update & Baby Season!

The last 10 days have been grueling. We spent every single day rescuing pregnant bats that continually became trapped in a specialty store located in an old building in downtown Mineral Wells, Texas. Last Thursday we finally convinced the building owner that a humane exclusion had to take place immediately -before babies were born- so mothers and babies alike would not become trapped. Thankfully 911 Wildlife came to the rescue and all the bats are now safe. All total we rescued 181 bats, most of them pregnant. All but two were released into our Bat Castle where they can come and go at will. The remaining two bats are healing from injuries sustained in the wall, but they will be able to go free soon. The video below shows part of one day’s rescue, that took place in the stifling hot bathroom of the specialty store.

During these past few weeks the Michigan 90 have been doing well. We are still raising the last pup (Bella, pictured below) who was born after arriving at Bat World. Her travel-stressed mother abandoned little Bella soon after giving birth so we are hand-raising her.  Just yesterday Bella progressed to eating semi-solid food (banana in warm goats milk) and her table manners went right out the window!









Over a dozen of the Michigan 90 bats are elderly and will need special care, so we recently created a “GeriBatric Ward” to give comfort to these little elders during the final years of their lives. The enclosure is large enough to allow the occupants to have privacy when they need it as well as having multiple places to snuggle, roost and feed at their leisure. The floor is padded to prevent injuries in the event of a fall. The enclosure hangs inside the fruit bat’s area so they can also receive colony visitors at night.

On top of the rescues and additional care needed for the Michigan 90, orphan season just arrived and phone calls and babies are rolling in (check our rescue log here). Throughout all this, we are still trying to raise the funds needed to match the wonderful $15,000 grant offer that came in last month to support the Michigan 90. We only have until August to raise the funds and with the additional rescue work taking most of our time we are growing a bit worried.  So far we have aquired just over $2,000 towards the matching grant. Anything you can do to help us secure this incredible offer will be appreciated more than you may realize. Please click here to donate. Alternately, you can donate through the Sunshine Rescue Club or even through this link (paypal is accepted).

Please remember, with baby season upon us, you may come across a grounded bat. Please click here for immediate help or email us at [email protected]

The Michigan 90

The past three weeks have perhaps been among the most trying we have ever encountered.

It started with the rescue of 90 fruit bats from the Organization for Bat Conservation (OBC) after it suddenly closed due to allegations of sexual harassment against the former Director, who allegedly left the organization “profoundly insolvent”.  For two decades we had watched the sad conditions of the bats being “used” in countless programs across the U.S., so we jumped at the chance to offer these bats lifetime sanctuary.

Many of the bats were on loan from zoos and other institutions so those bats had to be returned to those facilities. The bats that remained, however, included 90 bats, some of which were old and infirmed and with other various issues that made them unappealing to zoos and like-minded facilities, where appearance matters. The bats we rescued included 50 short-tailed fruit bats, 10 Egyptian fruit bats, 12 African fruit bats, 15 Jamaican fruit bats, 2 Indian flying foxes and 1 Rodrigues fruit bat.

Taking on 90 additional mouths to feed is a daunting task but thanks to you—our wonderful supporters who helped us build a new, larger sanctuary—we have the room to accommodate these poor, unwanted souls. When the bats arrived we were both joyous and saddened at the same time. We were joyous to give these bats a new lease on life with all the enrichment they deserve, but sad to see how emotionally and physically neglected some of them appeared to be, and that many of the smaller bats were thin and balding.  Three of the elderly bats had nails that were so long they had to be physically cut out of the mesh crate in which they arrived.

In the midst of all of the happiness at having the bats safely with us,  we lost one of our own, David Naranjo, who was tragically killed in a car accident. David was our “shining star” and so looked forward to giving the 90 new arrivals the life they should have always had. The loss of David hit us all very hard and in the most profound way imaginable. David was born to be a part of Bat World and in that sense irreplaceable. We have a wonderfully dedicated Bat World family consisting of staff and volunteers who have pitched in to help until we can eventually get someone else trained.

David, with Peekaboo.

The “Michigan 90” are adjusting to their new lives. Some individuals are being rehabilitated, including “Coco” a critically endangered Rodrigues fruit bat who was born in 1997 and loaned to the former director of OBC, along with another of her same species. In 2012, it was determined that Coco was going blind so she and her roost mate were moved to a small cage. Her roost mate died at some point but Coco remained confined to the small cage alone because, under the instructions of the former OBC director (and with no reflection on the OBC staff or the Board), it was believed that Coco would “freak out” if she was with other bats. On the alleged instruction of the former director, her claws were purposely allowed to grow so they curled 270 degrees (3/4 of a circle) making it so she could barely move around.  Because of the severe, curled length of her toenails, Coco could not unlatch her toes from the cage ceiling to turn right-side up to relieve herself, so she unwillingly soiled herself (behavior we are working to correct).

Along with other allegations of abuse and neglect, we later learned from a former staff member that Coco was allegedly kept in a broom closet for two years before finally being transferred to a different cage.  The former staff member reported that she would leave the door of the closet open while she was there so Coco could receive fresh air:

Coco, at Bat World Sanctuary, exploring her new surroundings and making dozens of new friends.

Bats are exceptionally clean by nature but in order to maintain themselves they must be able to ambulate. We trimmed all of the bat’s toenails that were overgrown and are in the process of rehabilitating their behavior as well as their feet and nails. Three bats (including Coco) were so accustomed to not being able to move about once they were placed in a certain location, they just hung in the exact same spot for hours on end. We are now helping them to understand that they are able to move freely on their own within our expansive enclosure.  We do this by gently helping them move their feet and guiding them across the enclosure ceiling while supporting their backs with one hand (as seen in our Live Bat Cams video footage, below).

We were promised that none of the bats were pregnant, however, several of the smaller short-tailed fruit bats were indeed pregnant on arrival. These tiny future mothers were placed into an enriched flight area, segregated from the rest of the colony, to await the birth of their babies.  Two of the females gave birth to girls within days of arriving so they were allowed to rejoin their colony in the large flight area with their offspring.

Left, one of the short-tailed fruit bats from OBC’s “Save the Shorties” fundraising campaigns. Right, one of the 50 “shorties” we rescued from OBC with her newborn baby girl.

The other mothers who gave birth to boys will stay with their youngsters until the boys are old enough to neuter in approximately 3 months. They will then be allowed to rejoin their colony.  One mother abandoned her baby, likely due to the stress of the transfer, so we are hand-raising her baby until she is old enough to rejoin her mom and the rest of the colony.

Most of the Michigan 90 have a lifespan of 25 years or more. In order to return to normalcy, some of these bats have months of rehabilitation ahead. Your donations help us to accomplish all that we do for these bats and more, but by taking in 90 extra bats we have essentially reached critical mass. We have the room and the staff-power to care for them, however, we need to ensure that we have the funds available for the lifetime care of these neglected and abused bats so they never have to suffer again. We can only do this with your support.


We are trying to raise $250,000, a lofty goal and one that we expect will take some time, but also one that will ensure that these innocent bats will never suffer again. With Bat World Sanctuary, they will receive ample food, veterinary aid, and loving care from a staff dedicated to ensuring their every creature comfort.

You helped build the safe sanctuary they now call home; please help us give the once abused and neglected bats lifetime care.

An elderly African fruit bat, who had his lip torn off during a fight with another male, finds peace and freedom at Bat World Sanctuary. He is one of 12 African fruit bats rescued from OBC.

On behalf of the 90 beautiful souls who will now have lifetime peace and happiness, thank you for your support.

In Loving Memory of David Naranjo

Our Hearts Are Broken……

We lost our shining star, David Naranjo, March 29, 2018 in a tragic car accident. It is impossible to express the pain we feel over the loss of David. He truly loved the bats and Bat World Sanctuary, and he lived at the facility.  Please know that the person whose words you read on some of our recent Facebook posts are those of David, whose likes and shares surpassed our own.

Although David was only with us for 6 months, little by little, that undeniable light that he had shining from within grew with each passing day; a light that touched the soul of those who knew him.  David’s tenderness with the animals that gravitated towards him was tangible; his expressive face would beam at the opportunity to gain more knowledge about the bats, and they thrived in his care as he embraced them for all that they are.

David was 6’9” tall and we use to laugh together at how his extraordinary height made him even more perfect for the job because he could reach any bat without a ladder. David physically towered over others but most of all he soared to heights of humanity that most of us can only dream of attaining.  Many young people these days seem to only talk-the-talk, but David walked-the-walk without speaking a word. He was brilliant, yet he was humble; he was gentle, but so very strong; he was dedicated, kind and talented. In the short time we were privileged to know him, we feel that we had barely scratched the surface of the greatness he possessed.

David ~ We can still hear your laughter and feel your presence.  We miss you so much dear, sweet David.  May you always travel on the wings of the bats that you loved so much.

David and Peekaboo, an Egyptian fruit bat who loved the fact that David was tall enough to see her face to face.

2017 Loving Tributes

In Memory of Fran Buraczynski.   ~Marion Buraczynski

In Memory of Wrigley and Jake.  ~Lynn Sutherland

In Memory of my Princess.  ~Leslie Wallace

In Memory of the little bat I found in a parking garage but died before I could get it to rescue. RIP little guy.   ~Amy  Wheeler

In Memory of my grandfather.   ~Gina Carreon

In Memory of my Indy.   ~Janice Gosselin

In memory of my beloved Zelda.  ~Courtney WirtJanel

In Memory of Herkel.   ~ John Hyatt

 In Memory of Jerry.   ~Jocelyn  Joy 

In Memory of Eleanor J. MacDonald, a pioneer in her field and one of my earliest mentors.   ~Noel Lampazzi

In Memory of Maggie.   ~Claire  Todd  

In Memory of Tom Taylor in New Zealand.   ~Wendy  Gardiner  

In Memory of  Sugar and and Teddy Rocco.  ~Melissa  Rocco  

In Loving Memory of Kimb Miller.   ~Barbara  Ray  

In Memory of Shirley Case.   ~Margaret  Case  

In Memory of Holly-berry, the sweetest free-tail of them all!   ~Shari  Blissett-Clark  

In Memory of Barbara Dahm.  ~Lisa  Dahm 

In Memory of Maximus Galvin, a rat who went from neglected and scared to all-time-best snugglebutt.   ~Maggie A  Galvin 

In Memory of Poppertop.   ~Jean  Thompson  

In Loving Memory of Gladys Kenemer Siao    ~Barbara Merry Geng

In Memory of Kadji and Thor.   ~Rainsong Grant  

In Memory of Fiona.   ~Susan Dustin  

In memory of my dear, sweet Lily.   ~Rachael Polachek  

In Memory of Jim Oviedo.   ~Michelle Oviedo 

In Memory of Marcile Jordan and James Ramsey.   ~Diana  Ramsey  

Memory of KelseyGirl.   ~Patricia Rankin  

In Memory of Silver, my Sweetheart Girl.   ~Sheila Neidhardt  

In Memory of Wylie and Squeak.   ~Susan Pollich  

In Loving Memory of my father, Charles F. Sweiger.   ~Karen  Sweiger-Veil  

In Memory of Bianca.   ~Morgan Fechtel  

In Memory of Donna Fellner.   ~Diane Scott  

In Memory of Cosmo.   ~Celeste Nelson  

In Memory of doggies Mama Kira, Galen, and Loki.   ~Ellen C  Cawthorne  

In Memory of Nick Dahm.   ~Lisa Dahm  

In Memory of Katie & RJ.   ~Lisa Gates 

In Memory of dad, Rabbi Aaron Gottesman.   ~Judith Gottesman  

In Memory of Michele Gagnon-Burgess.   ~Charise Mixa 

In Memory of my wonderful dog, Quincy.   ~Mary Lou Force  

In Memory of Paul and Jan.   ~Paula Lee Dowidchuk  

In Memory of Weegems.   ~Dorothy Sherman  

In Memory of Julie Fitzpatrick.    ~Jodi Fitzpatrick 

In Loving Memory of my doggie Maizie who passed last week.   ~Laci-Ann Mosher

In Memory of Oberon, our little O-bat!    ~Teri Lanza

In Memory of my father who helped me rescue many wild animals.   ~Pamela  Keeley-Gassmann

In Memory of little Iggy.   ~  Greta Dubbeld

In Memory of Kavy Bianco.   ~ Ishel Bianco

In Memory of Charles J. Poynter.   ~ Linda Poynter

In Memory of Jack Ciliberti.   ~Molly Ciliberti

In Memory of Poppertop.  ~Jean Thompson                

In Memory of Mina, Sadie, Molly, Ebby and Patches.   ~Marilyn  Gruenloh

In Memory of Gabe Cox.   ~Genevieve  Cerf

In Memory of my brother, Jerry.   ~Karen J  Lazar

In Memory of Sunshine!    ~Susie  Mays




Benger the Avenger

At first he did not look like a vision of Beauty but that was because he had been through so much.

Benger after he was hydrated and feeling better

Benger was found in July of 2017 as an orphan. He was almost two miles from the nearest nursery colony. He was about four weeks old and too large to have been carried by another bat in flight, so we have no idea how he got to the porch of the lady who called us. In order to get where he was found he traveled through feral cats, raccoons and skunks, fire ants, traffic and burning hot pavement. He finally ended up on a porch where he was spotted, and we were called right away.

For the first few days we honestly didn’t think Benger would survive. He was critically dehydrated, so much so that it took 5mls of fluids –more than the amount of blood contained in his tiny body- to get him up to speed.

He was also skin and bones and vomited at almost every meal, losing all the formula and precious calories his body so desperately needed. Then burns started appearing on his toes and tail membrane, likely from the scalding hot pavement he traveled across. He lost his tail to burns and eventually lost on of his thumbs and a few of his toes.

It took Benger two months to completely heal. Throughout it all, he was such a hero. Despite the pain he endured, he never lost the will to survive. He isn’t releasable because of his injuries so we will take care of him the rest of his life (15 to 20 years).

His name is a combination of Roger (don’t ask) and Benjamin Button, because he looked like a shriveled old man when he arrived. We tacked on “Avenger” because to us he is nothing short of a tiny superhero.

To celebrate his survival, Bat World volunteer Moriah Champagne made Benger a tiny cape. His cape hangs on display beside the staff lockers at Bat World Sanctuary.

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