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Several species of bats use habitat on DCNR lands, including:

  • Caves
  • Rock crevices
  • Under bark of trees
  • Old buildings

The Indiana bat and northern long-eared bat are federally-listed species that requires special protection measures. Other bat species are listed by the Pa. Game Commission.

Learn about bats by visiting state parks, such as Canoe Creek, that host interpretive programs on bats to help the public understand bat biology, habits, and the importance of bats.

DCNR and the Pa. Game Commission manage a combined 3.8 million acres of mostly forested public lands for many uses and values, including wildlife habitat.

Some activities on these lands include:

  • Timber management
  • Prescribed burns
  • Roads, trails, fencing
  • Firewood

These actions can impact Indiana and northern long-eared bats using foraging, roosting, and habitat at different points in their life cycles.

However, timber removal and prescribed burns also benefit the bats by creating foraging and roosting habitat.

To minimize and offset these impacts, the Pa. Game Commission and DCNR developed the State Lands Habitat Conservation Plan for Indiana and Northern Long-Eared Bats FAQs (PDF), and obtained an Incidental Take Permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on December 23, 2020.

The Habitat Conservation Plan outlines how the Game Commission and DCNR will address impacts across state lands over a 30-year period; and allows more proactive planning for bat conservation.

It includes initiatives such as seasonal restrictions, canopy retention, and hibernation protection.

Please visit the Pa. Game Commission’s website for more information.