In the year since Batty the Vampire Bat has been for sale on Ravelry we've raised $108 for Bat Conservation International. Granted it's not $1 million for Doctors Without Borders, but it's something.
We've also learned a bit about bats as well as visited the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin to watch the bat's emerge at sunset. While they may not be as important as bees are to food production, a tiny bat can gobble up to 1,000 mosquito-sized bugs in one hour--that's a lot of leaf-eaters and West Nile Virus down the hatch. They're also stellar pollinators.
In addition to the role they play in the global ecosystem, these little varmints are wicked cute and need our help; bats only produce one baby a year and are prone to a horrible disease called White-nose Syndrome, which is kiling America's bats at an alarming rate.
Yes, bats can carry rabies but so can your neighbor's unvaccinated kitty cat. Like any wild animal, bats should be treated with respect and wariness.
All this is to say, thank you for your support of our little fundraiser.
The United Nations has named 2011-2012, the Year of the Bat. If you need a way to celebrate the environment, Samhain, All Hallows Eve or El Dia de los Muerto, a little bat knitting might be in order. Or maybe Kitty just needs something new to bat around. Regardless, all proceeds will go toward the good work done by the folks at BCI.
Batty is available on Ravelry here.