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The Adventures of Horacio the Bat

Bat Conservation Programme, Bolivia 2000. Text: Isabel Galarza.

Bats are among the most misunderstood of creatures and need all the help they can get, and as such they have become a strong focus of conservation projects the world over. The main message to children and members of the public is that bats are not harmful (with the exception of vampire bats, which may carry rabies). On the contrary, bats are directly responsible many of the ecological services we take for granted, such as fertilising plants (pollination) and eating annoying or harmful insects (natural pest control) for example.

This particular storybook relates the adventures of Horacio, a small insectivorous bat who gets separated from his family and desperately seeks his own kind.

Note: I had originally provided the drawings for this project somewhat off-handedly as a favour to the author of the story, but it was actually Horacio who first made me realise the potential of using cartoons for environmental education. Especially when the heroes are the misunderstood and downtrodden creatures... like bats.