Snakes and Spiders and Bats, Oh My!

Question: What do spiders, snakes and bats all have in common?

Answer: Aside from the thought of them giving you goose bumps, they also all roamed the earth with the dinosaurs!
Even though they might freak you out, these creatures have been around for millions of years and all of them play really important roles on our planet. Plus, they’d probably have some pretty cool stories to tell if they could talk. How many other animals can say they’ve hung out with T. rex and Pterosaurs?

snake spider mouseTake snakes, for example: They gobble up all the rats and mice that eat our crops and cookies and carry dangerous diseases. Without snakes to help keep things under control, we’d be living in a world overrun with rodents. Yikes!

  • Did You Know: Snake venom can be used to treat everything from cancer to heart disease?

As for spiders, most of these little creepy crawlies aren’t even poisonous. They help control bug populations by eating up annoying mosquitoes, and their venom has also been used in medical research to help control diseases.

So now that you’ve decided snakes and spiders aren’t so bad, are you ready to take a different look at bats? For anyone who’s seen Underworld or Dracula, you might think bats are just undercover blood-sucking vampires.

The truth is that bats are actually pretty shy creatures. You may not want to come face to face with one in the corner of your attic, but if you did, they probably wouldn’t even bat an eye. They prefer to munch on insects and can easily eat thousands of pesky mosquitoes every night.

Bats are also pollinators, meaning they help plants and flowers grow – just like bees and hummingbirds! On top of all that, bats are an indicator species, meaning if you catch them snoozing under the roof at your cottage, it’s a sign that the surrounding environment is healthy.

Like most animals on the planet, all of these creatures face a lot of challenges. Habitat loss threatens the survival of all kinds of snakes, as well as some spider and bat species.

Pine snakes, like our very own Fantom, are being squeezed out of their habitat so that houses and farms can be built. Bats are also at risk from pesticides!

But the biggest danger is something they have in common – human fear.

Some people think that because bats, spiders, and snakes aren’t as cute and cuddly as a koala bear or baby seal, they don’t deserve our help. That’s just crazy!

If you want to make sure these incredible animals stick around for a few more million years, here are some actions you can take:

  • Build a hibernaculum for snakes (a cool underground winter hang-out). Learn how on the Toronto Zoo website.
  • Learn more about endangered and threatened snake, bat and spider species… then spread the word about how they aren’t as scary as some think.
  • Encourage your parents NOT to use insecticides, which are harmful to bats.
  • Grab a parent and get them to help you build a bat house. Check out Hinterland Who’s Who for instructions!
Earth Rangers is a non-profit organization that works to inspire and educate children about the environment. At EarthRangers.com kids can play games, discover amazing facts, meet animal ambassadors and fundraise to protect biodiversity.
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Snakes and Spiders and Bats, Oh My!, 5.0 out of 5 based on 3 ratings
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20 Comments

  1. Green Bean
    Ranger5691926 says:

    i love reptiles and bats and spiders

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  2. Green Bean
    Ranger5692962 says:

    i love the jefferson salmander

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
  3. Toadstool
    sparklebird says:

    SPIDERS R FREAKY!!!!!!!!!!

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
  4. Forest Friend
    Lightningpelt says:

    You know what? I just don’t understand some people… Snakes, spiders, and bats are all… SMALLER THAN YOU!!! So why should you be scared of them!?!

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  5. New Bee
    Ranger56104143 says:

    im wonding why people just talk why it’s so weird :) :(

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  6. Tree Hugger
    VKSearthRanger123 says:

    Lightningpelt, you sure are right.

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  7. New Bee
    Ranger56145164 says:

    Some people are sacred because some of them are poisanus and really dangerous but you do have a point

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  8. New Bee
    Ranger56145164 says:

    hi

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  9. New Bee
    Ranger56151712 says:

    i love snakes but not so much for spiders love bats too.AND HATE MOTH THEY ARE EVIL EVIL I TELL YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!THEY FLY ARONUD MY HEAD AND GET ON MY NRVES THEY HATE ME HATE ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  10. New Bee
    Ranger56191780 says:

    Ranger56151712 like you I hate MOTHSSSSSS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And ilike snakes especially poisnious ones.

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