Scholarship Paves Way for Bat Biologists and Better Understanding of Michigan Bats
Michigan Critter Catchers offers bat conservation scholarship opportunity to college students
studying Michigan's bat population.
Terre Haute, Ind. — Flying squirrels might think otherwise, but the only true flying mammals
on the planet are bats. Nocturnal and rarely noticed in the twilight skies but unmistakable
when sharing an attic with their cohabitant human homeowners, bats are shrouded in myths
and hounded by misconceptions. The Indiana State University Center for North American Bat
Research and Conservation is shedding light on bats and educating college students pursuing
careers in biology, and Michigan Critter Catchers is lending a hand.
Marking the continuation of a scholarship first offered in 2007, Critter Catchers president
Dave Kugler renewed the company's commitment in 2012. Administered by the Indiana State
University Foundation, the $1,000 "Critter Catchers, Inc. Bat Conservation Scholarship" is
available to full time students at Indiana State University or any university located in Michigan.
The student must be working on a project applicable to Michigan's bat population, as the
scholarship is offered to further the knowledge base of Michigan's bats.
"Renewing the 'Critter Catchers, Inc. Bat Conservation Scholarship' enables the next generation
of biologists to focus their energies on academic endeavors," said Kugler. "Bats are amazing
creatures that we are only beginning to understand, and this scholarship is meant to foster
additional studies of the bat population found in the Great Lakes State."
"Bat biology has been a focus of personal study for the past 25 years, and it's safe to say that
bats are still providing new lessons for me, said John Whitaker Jr., Professor of Biology and
Director of the ISU Bata Center. "The Indiana State University Center for North American Bat
Research and Conservation is a collaboration of scientists in many states, and this scholarship
opportunity from Critter Catchers supports our mission."
Learn more about the "Critter Catchers, Inc. Bat Conservation Scholarship" by contacting the
Indiana State University Center for North American Bat Research and Conservation at: (812)
About Critter Catchers, Inc.: Founded in 2005, the Ortonville, Michigan based Critter
Catchers, Inc. was formed by David Kugler, an Oakland University graduate holding a Bachelors
of Science in Biology, and a Masters Degree in Environmental Engineering from Wayne State
University. Critter Catchers provides animal removal services in SE Michigan and specializes in
humane bat removal. www.crittercatchersinc.com.
About the Indiana State University Center for North American Bat Research and
Conservation — Founded in 2005, the Bat Center's mission is to conduct and encourage
research on North American bats, by collaborating with students and other scientists, and to
make findings available to the scientific community and the public through technical and popular
publications, teaching and outreach programs. http://www.isubatcenter.org.
Assistant Director - Center for North American Bat Research and Conservation, Indiana State
A serious disease has been killing off bats in the United States and Canada. It was initially discovered in New York, but has now spread to many of the surrounding states and as far west as Oklahoma.
These bats have a white fungus growing on them during hibernation. This fungus is called Geomyces destructans. It is now estimated that over a million bats have died as a result of White-Nose Syndrome
Photo courtesy Al Hicks, New York Department of Environmental Conservation