Fort Knox Develops Artificial Roots for Rare Bats

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FORT KNOX, Ky. (AP) — Fort Knox has developed artificial habitats for the endangered Indiana bat and has posted the roosts on telephone poles at the Army post.

Fort Knox Environmental Management Division Wildlife Biologist Jimmy Watkins says the post put up 12 of the roosts in forested areas on the installation. Watkins told The News-Enterprise, officials have confirmed that two of the roosts have been used by Indiana bats.

The bats, which weigh only one quarter of an ounce with a 9- to 11-inch wingspan, hibernate in caves or mines during the winter but roost, give birth and raise their offspring under tree bark on dead or dying trees during summer. The roosts are created using a telephone pole treated only at the bottom and dressed with artificial bark to replicate a tree.

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