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The All Things Risk Podcast

The All Things Risk podcast explores the themes of risk, uncertainty and resilience as applied to sports, the arts, current affairs and just about any other domain. We feature long-form conversations with interesting guests who have loads of fascinating stories, tips and tools.
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Dec 28, 2023

I was also going to release this one over Halloween, but I think that for the reasons that you will hear, it's far, far more appropriate to release it now. My guest is Dr. Merlin Tuttle, and today we talk about the conservation of bats. Merlin is a well-known American conservationist. He is the founder of Merlin Tuttle's Bat Conservation. He has studied and photographed bats for over 60 years, and in so doing, he has changed the perception of bats, from that of bats being an animal to be feared to one of them being valuable, safe, even cute, and likable. Bats also play an important role in protecting plant species, controlling deadly mosquito populations, and reducing the reliance on pesticides.

However, there is a lot more work to do because forest habitats of bats are disappearing, and bat populations are vulnerable. And as you will hear, the fear of bats is still a huge factor in all of this. This is also a conversation about fear. And we discuss that. Merlin shares his background, how and why he developed the largest collection of bat photographs anywhere in the world, bats and contagious diseases (and the myths around that). We also talk about Merlin's work protecting the bat colony of the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, Texas, which has now become a world-famous tourist site, and so much more.

Show notes:

Merlin Tuttle’s Bat Conservation

Merlin’s bat resources

Merlin’s video gallery

James Fairhead’s paper on the Ebola virus

Bats on the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, Texas

Exaggerated Disease Warnings - here you can find articles, citations, infographics for sharing all about bats and disease.

White-Nose Syndrome  

Finding, Protecting and Restoring America's Historic Bat Caves    

Pesticide Addiction: How Bats Can Help

Rabies in Perspective

Selecting a Quality Bat House 

Photo gallery

All about Austin's bats, www.austinbats.org

About MTBC field trips:

Citizen Scientists: In Search of Bats

 

Videos:

Winning Friends, Not Battles

Importance of Bats

Bats are Austin's Favorite Neighbors

Khao Chong Pran story

True Facts: Help the Bats!

Of Agaves and Bats film, https://vimeo.com/277755110

More videos for all bat values, https://www.merlintuttle.org/video-gallery/

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