The first confirmed sighting of a silver-haired bat in Greene County has been documented by an environmental science class at Tusculum.
The discovery of the bat was made by Levi Morgan, a sophomore environmental science major from Greeneville; Brandon Ball, a junior biology – environmental science concentration major from Greeneville; Shania Blair, a junior biology – environmental science major from Tazewell, and Patrick Jones, a senior biology – environmental science major from Johnson City.
The group of students found the bat while working on a group project as part of an “Environmental Assessment” course taught at Tusculum by Dr. Conor Keitzer, assistant professor of natural sciences.
The student group sent photographic evidence of their discovery to John Campbell, the Bat Program coordinator for the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency, which will result in an updated range for the species in Tennessee by the TWRA. According to the TWRA website, the silver-haired bat is easily identified by its “frosted” appearance and is also readily recognized in flight, as this is the slowest flying bat in North America. In Tennessee, they can be locally common during migration, but are generally uncommon the rest of the year and do not occur in large numbers in the state.