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Join us for an evening of wildlife biology and learn more about the secret lives of snakes on the prairies and the importance of bats in pest control.
Bats: pest predators in peril
Erin Baerwald, Ph.D. (NSERC Postdoctoral Research Fellow - Bat Conservation, University of Regina)
All bats in Canada are nocturnal insect-eaters, eating literally tons of crop pests every night. These pest-control services are estimated to be worth billions of dollars every year for agriculture, by reducing both the number of crop pests and the amount of pesticides needed. Despite their importance to our ecosystem, many species of bat across Canada are facing diverse and numerous threats. I will introduce you to the diversity and importance of bats and discuss the many conservation issues they are facing.
The secret lives of snakes on the plains
For a snake, living in the Saskatchewan grasslands has its challenges - the summers are short and the winters are long, there’s nowhere to really hide, there are plenty of predators, and misinformed people often persecute without hesitation. Despite that, southern Saskatchewan is home to one of the most diverse communities of snakes in Canada. My lab has been studying snakes in Saskatchewan since 2008 and with the contributions of radio-telemetry, genetics, and very dedicated students, I have some interesting stories to share about the secret lives of snakes in the grasslands.