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How many bats fly out of the Congress Bridge in Austin?

How many bats fly out of the Congress Bridge in Austin?

1.5 million bats
The Ann W. Richards Congress Avenue Bridge, located in the heart of downtown Austin, hosts the largest urban bat colony in the world, estimated at 1.5 million bats. It is a maternity colony, and female Mexican free-tailed bats raise an estimated 750,000 pups each year at the bridge.

Do the bats in Austin come out every night?

The bats do continue to fly out every single night, but some nights they are very difficult to see. By the first week of November, the bats have begun to migrate, for it is starting to get cold and there is low visibility. Every morning, the bats return to the bridge about 30 minutes before sunrise.

Where do you park for Congress Bridge bats?


  • 305 S Congress Ave Austin, TX 78704. Limited parking is available for up to four hours at the southeast end of the bridge.
  • 214 Barton Springs Rd. 78704.
  • 301 W 2nd St. Austin, TX 78701.
  • 208 Barton Springs Rd. 78704.
  • 101 Colorado St., Austin, TX 78701.

What time of year do the bats come out in Austin?

Starting in late March and continuing through early fall, North America’s largest urban bat population calls Austin home. The bats begin to wake up and start their night flight around sunset. The first few bats begin to trickle out from under the bridge then.

Where do the Austin bats go?

The Austin colony tends to head back to Mexico around the start of November. Hollis, an AARP spokesman who is married to American-Statesman reporter Lilly Rockwell, wondered where exactly the bats go at night, once they’re out of sight.

Why are there so many bats in Austin TX?

Why are there so many bats in Austin, Texas? Without fail since the early 1980s, bats have long frequented the migration route between Austin, Northern, and Central Mexico. In fact, Mexican free-tailed bats have been called Austin their second home dating back to the late 1800s.

Where is the best place to watch the bats in Austin?

The walkway on the east side of the Congress Avenue bridge offers the best vantage point for watching the bats emerge and fly eastward over Lady Bird Lake. The hillside below the bridge is a little more kid-friendly since you can spread out a blanket and even have a picnic while you wait.

Where do the Austin bats go in the winter?

Most of the Congress Avenue bridge bats migrate back to Texas in early to late March, making them “well adapted to the Austin lifestyle,” because they enjoy spending winter in Mexico, returning in time for South by Southwest, sleeping late, and basically embracing “a slacker lifestyle” until late spring and early …

Why are there so many bats in Austin?

Where do the Austin bats fly every night?

It’s common knowledge that bats are mostly nocturnal creatures that take late evening and nightly flights eastward as the sunsets. This is the case for the nearly 2 million bats in Austin, Texas. They fly eastward from the Congress Avenue Bridge down the mighty Colorado River.

Do Austin bats fly in the rain?

The bats will fly 20-60 minutes after rain showers, but long-lasting rain will keep them in for the night. Best viewing is from mid-March to early May and from late July through mid-September.

What’s new on Congress Avenue in Austin?

In December 2020, Austin Transportation completed installation of near-term mobility and safety improvements on 1.3 miles of Congress Avenue between Riverside Drive and 11 th Street. The changes include left and right turn lanes at key intersections, safer and more flexible signalization, protected bicycle lanes, and improved pedestrian crossings.

Is Congress Avenue Bridge the only bat roost in central Texas?

Congress Avenue Bridge is by no means the only bat roost in Central Texas. Learn more on our Radar page. Austin Bat Refuge is funded solely through donations and grants. We provide care for injured and orphaned bats, education outreach, and conflict resolution. We have been the sole bat rehabilitators in the Austin area for 12 years.

What was the original name of the Congress Avenue Bridge?

The bridge was known as the Congress Avenue Bridge from the construction of the first span across the Colorado River at that location in the late 19th century until November 16, 2006, when the Austin City Council renamed the current bridge in honor of Ann W. Richards, the 45th Governor of Texas and a long-term resident of Austin.

What’s new on the Austin Bridge?

A bi ke lane has been created on both sides of the bridge (Thanks COA!), so it’s now much safer for bikes and bat watchers on the bridge. Please respect others’ social space and spread out along the rail. Parkspace, created by the Austin Foundation for Architecture, was a colorful layout of squares for social distancing.

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