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Volume 17, Issue 1, Spring 1999

Arizona Bat-and-Mouse Natural History Tour

A Nine-Day Field Excursion to the Sky Islands

A Nine-Day Field Excursion to the Sky Islands

Join BCI in working with noted illustrator and naturalist Fiona Reid from the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto as she traps and studies small mammals for the upcoming edition of the Peterson Field Guide to Mammals of the U.S. and Canada. This trip will bring travelers to one of the most species-rich environments in North America: the basin-and-range province of southeastern Arizona. Here we will encounter not only bats, but also an impressive array of small rodents and shrews. Participants will learn firsthand the techniques for small-animal field studies and the work involved in producing a field guide. We will assist Reid in live-trapping her subjects, after which she will study and paint them in the field before releasing them back to the wild.

In the beautiful setting of the Chiricahua, Santa Rita, and Huachuca mountain ranges, we will take early morning bird walks, outings to look at plants and larger mammals, and trips to local attractions. At night, we will use spotlights and night-vision equipment to observe birds, bats, and other nocturnal mammals. We will also set mist nets and harp traps, in which we can expect to catch at least 14 different species of bats, ranging in size from the tiny western pipistrelle (Pipistrellus hesperus) to the impressive big free-tailed bat (Nyctinomops macrotis) with an 18-inch wingspan.

In addition to being the northernmost range for nectar bats in the U.S., this area offers the country’s largest diversity of hummingbirds and several species of squirrels known only to a single mountain range. There will be ample opportunity to photograph the wildlife we encounter.

Don’t miss out on this one-of-a-kind opportunity to participate at the ground level of creating a field guide while experiencing the wonder and species diversity of a spectacular area of North America with fellow BCI members.

Departure: Friday, Sept. 10, 1999
Cost: $1,295 (all inclusive from Tucson, AZ)

For registration materials and more information, contact:

Janet Tyburec
P.O. Box 86493, Tucson, AZ 85754

Fiona A. Reid has led nature tours for Questers Tours and Travel, New York, for the past decade, showing tourists the wonders of diverse lands from Indonesia to Alaska and Venezuela. An accomplished writer and artist, she has written and/or illustrated numerous field guides including A Field Guide to the Mammals of Central America & Southeast Mexico, The Golden Guide to Bats of the World, and Mammals of the Neotropics (Volumes 1-3). Her artwork has also graced several BCI catalog products.

* In addition to being contributors to the sculpture, Parsons Brinckerhoff is also the firm that redesigned the bridge in 1980, unwittingly making it ideal bat habitat.

All articles in this issue:

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