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Bat Patrol

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Night Watch

Night Watch
Photograph by Jay Dickman

Among the most abundant bats in North America, Mexican free–tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis mexicana) leave their winter caves in Mexico in spring for other caves in Texas and the southwestern U.S. They live in a dozen or so caves in south-central Texas near several hundred thousand acres of crops in a rich agricultural region called the Winter Garden. In June as many as seven billion corn earworm moths, plus a similar number of other insect pests, fly from Mexico to the Winter Garden, where their larvae consume corn, cotton, and other crops. Bats play an important role by devouring large numbers of the insects.

Camera: Nikon F100
Film Type: Fujichrome Provia 100
Lens: Nikon 17-35mm
Speed and F-Stop: 1/8 @ f/4
Weather Conditions: Another hot Texas summer afternoon
Time of Day: Just after sundown
Lighting Techniques: I underexposed the background by about 3/4 stop, and lit Merlin with a SB 28 Nikon strobe held off camera.

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