Lincoln Park Zoo sends out bat signal, asks Chicago residents to report bat sightings

October 30, 2012 (CHICAGO)

The zoo is asking the public to submit their bat photos, bat stories and bat tips to Scientists are hoping to find a colony to study, according to a zoo release.

"Bats are a great asset to an urban community, and we want to encourage Chicagoans to embrace them as good neighbors to have," Urban Wildlife Research Coordinator Julia Kilgour said in a release. "There are lots of common misconceptions about bats, and it is important to us to spread the word that these little guys are not out to get people."

Instead, they're out to get those pesky insects like mosquitos. They also help pollinate plants.

Eight bat species are known to live in Illinois. But it's not clear how many of those are in Chicago, so the zoo has placed bat detectors on trees, poles and fences around the area. They can pick up on the sonic patterns of bats and differentiate between the species.

Four species have been detected near Lincoln Park Zoo- big brown bats, eastern red bats, silver-haired bats and hoary bats. Learn more about the Urban Wildlife Research plan at

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