With the mild winter and warm temperatures starting earlier in the year, this could be a banner year for mosquitoes. In addition to the itch, the little buzzing terrors can spread some pretty rough diseases. When we lived in the woods in Connecticut, it was probably my favorite harbinger of outdoor weather when we would see the bats slitting around like mad at dusk, catching as many insects as they could after the lean times of winter. Bats rock!
Here in Southern California, the mosquito problem is far less dramatic, so I’m not sure if I should expect many bats–hopefully that would simply be a regional thing, and not because of the disease that has been wiping out huge numbers of North American bats over the past few years. No matter where you live, I hope you don’t hang onto the cartoon fantasy of bats being bad guys–we desperately need them for the balance of our world. That’s why I’m a big ol’ fan of the Bat World Sanctuary. Each year they rescue thousands of bats via 20 rescue centers nationwide. You can get involved and volunteer, and maybe even consider putting up a bat house on the side of your home or nearby. You’ll itch a lot less, flowers and fruits will be better pollinated, and you’ll be helping restore some balance without having to put out a ton of effort. I promise you wont wake up with two little puncture wounds on your neck, unless a mysterious count moves into the abandoned abbey next door.