Volume 37, Issue 1, 2018

Batkid and Robin Join the Bat Squad!

Introducing the Newest Caped Crusaders for Chiroptera Conservation

After helping save his city as Batkid Miles is now helping to educate
others about the benefits of bats
Courtesy of Paul Sakuma Photography / Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area.

In November of 2013, the Bat-Signal illuminated the skies over Gotham City. Two young heroes, 5 year-old Miles Scott and his brother Clayton, answered the call and sprung into action as their alter egos, Batkid and Robin. With the help of the Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area Foundation, over 20,000 fans cheered on the dynamic duo as they saved San Francisco-turned-Gotham City from hordes of dastardly villains.

And just as Bruce Wayne was inspired by earth’s only flying mammal, Miles and Clayton Scott are hoping to learn more about the other caped crusaders of the night...bats!

“I was a bat for a day, so I need to know my roots,” said Miles.

His favorite type of bat? The flying fox (whose ‘cape’ can be over 6 feet wide)!

Miles and Clayton’s parents, Nick and Natalie Scott, own and operate a farm near Tulelake, California. Their property is north of San Francisco and near Modoc National Forest and Lava Beds National Monument. When he was younger, Miles would often claim that the nearby caves were his home to live with his bat friends.

Miles and Clayton know that bats can be a big help to farmers
Courtesy of Natalie Scott

And those bat friends are incredibly helpful to the local farmers, like the Scotts. In fact, a recent study estimated that bats save the agricultural industry $23 billion a year in costs related to pest control and damage. Species found in the caves, like pallid bats (Antrozous pallidus), are especially helpful in controlling grasshopper, cutworm and armyworm populations—all foes to farmers.

“After learning more, we are interested in the benefits [bats] can provide. We will definitely be looking into bat boxes on our property,” said Natalie Scott.

“Thanks bats, you help us a lot,” said Miles. Both Miles and Clayton have joined the Bat Squad so that they can learn more about the benefits of their bat brethren.

Miles already knows that there are some key differences between the Dark Knight and his nocturnal neighbors; “Batman has gadgets and real bats don’t. Batman can’t really fly and real bats can!”


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