Watch: Texas Cavers Re-Gate Ezell’s Cave
In an effort to bring back the colony of bats that once called Ezell’s Cave home, the Texas Cave Management Association recently replaced the caves gate with a bat-friendly version.
The San Antonio Express-News reports that some two dozen cavers, working through intermittent rain, participated in the project which used 3 tons of steel to construct the new gate.
The new gate replaces previous management attempts which either sealed the cave completely or gated it in a most bat unfriendly way.
Costing upwards of $15,000 USD, funds for the project came from grants from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Edwards Aquifer Authority, as well as individual donations. Those who donated $100 had their full name placed on a length of steel, while lesser donations received only their initials.
A designated National Natural Landmark, Ezell’s Cave contains an important and delicate ecosystem of nearly 100 rare and endangered subterranean species, including the Texas Blind Salamander. If that isn’t enough reason to protect it, the cave also provides direct access to the Edwards Aquifer which provides water to about two million people.
Located on the south side of San Marcos in a residential neighborhood, Ezell’s Cave and the surrounding 2 acres were purchased in 2004 by the Texas Cave Management Association.
[via R D Milhollin]