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Response to a Misleading Scientific American Bat Story


Response to Misleading Scientific American Bat Story I am responding to the article titled, “A Secret Weapon in Preventing the Next Pandemic: Fruit Bats,” which appeared in the August 2, 2023 issue of Scientific American. The title appears to promote a better appreciation of bats. However, the next sentence mistakenly claims that bats worldwide are […]

Bat Flash! Distorted Truth that Threatens Bats, People, and Science


Believe it or not, bats have one of our planet’s finest records of living safely with humans. Despite frequent claims to the contrary, they harbor no more viruses than other animals.1 In fact, there is no historical support for claims that close association with bats increases risks of disease outbreaks in humans or other animals.2 Those […]

Review of the “Pocket Guide to the Mammals of Costa Rica”

The Pocket Guide to the Mammals of Costa Rica is a comprehensive and exquisitely well-illustrated guide to the mammals of Costa Rica. Well-organized and easy to read, it is illustrated with a combination of outstanding photographs by top wildlife photographers and Fiona Reid’s unsurpassed drawings. Where key characters exist, they are well-illustrated. Unfortunately, some bats […]

Helping Bats at Costa Rica’s Harmony Hotel

“Excuse me, but I can’t resist asking what you’re doing?” The question came from a curious young woman, wondering why I was six feet off one of the Harmony Hotel’s well-managed footpaths. Not just off the path but squatting low as I peered up at the underside of a drooping palm leaf. When I responded, […]

Bat Disease Speculation Fails Tests of Time and Credible Science

Good science attempts to disprove, not prove, hypotheses1. Yet, for more than a decade, a growing number of virologists and epidemiologists have attempted to prove instead of test hypothesized disease threats from bats. Bats make tempting targets because they are found nearly everywhere and are easily sampled and widely feared. Furthermore, sensational speculation linking them […]

Boosting Bats in South Africa

When Merlin discovered that he would have a day-long layover in Johannesburg, en route home from Zambia, he couldn’t resist contacting one of his favorite bat conservation colleagues, Dr. Peter Taylor. And, not surprisingly, Peter convinced him to extend his stay by several days. On his first visit in 2000, Merlin and Peter had joined […]

Workshop Volunteers Making a Difference for One of Earth’s Most Important Animal Refuges

Zambia’s Kasanka National Park provides a key “refueling” stopover site for some 8 – 10 million straw-colored fruit bats, the world’s largest remaining mammal migration. It also supports an unusually diverse assortment of habitats, including a wide variety of woodlands and riparian forests interspersed with papyrus swamps, lakes and grassy floodplains. In addition to the […]

Pecan Growers Partnering with Bats

Our Join the Nightlife workshop in Central Texas featured a collaboration with Swift River Pecans and the Noble Research Institute, and was an enthusiastically acclaimed success by participants. Thirty-two attended from seven states, spending three days and nights learning from leading experts on bats and environmentally friendly pecan growing and agriculture.  Speakers included Troy Swift, […]

Join the Nightlife! And Discover the World of Bats and Pecans​

Earlier this year, we partnered with Bat Survey Solutions to survey for bats at Swift River Pecans, where MTBC is currently testing characteristics of bat house success in Texas. The goal was to identify bat species using native pecan forests and cultivated orchards and to document their role in agricultural pest control. We identified seven species using mist nets, harp […]

Bat Houses to the Rescue!

There is encouraging news for little brown myotis (Myotis lucifugus) in Wisconsin. Once the state’s most abundant bat, this species suffered huge losses in recent years due to an introduced fungus that causes an ailment known as white-nose syndrome. Now this species appears to be making a strong recovery, thanks in large part to one […]

Michael Lazari Karapetian

Michael Lazari Karapetian has over twenty years of investment management experience. He has a degree in business management, is a certified NBA agent, and gained early experience as a money manager for the Bank of America where he established model portfolios for high-net-worth clients. In 2003 he founded Lazari Capital Management, Inc. and Lazari Asset Management, Inc.  He is President and CIO of both and manages over a half a billion in assets. In his personal time he champions philanthropic causes. He serves on the board of Moravian College and has a strong affinity for wildlife, both funding and volunteering on behalf of endangered species.