An unused mine in southern Illinois is now in the hands of the Pontiac-based Organization for Bat Conservation. The “Magazine Mine”, located in southern Illinois, closed decades ago when the federal government the Indiana Bat as endangered. Now the owner is turning over its rights to the Organization for Bat Conservation. Founder, Rob Mies says the cave provides critical habitat.
“The Magazine Mine houses upwards of 50,000 maybe even 100,000 bats for the winter. When bats can go underground they can avoid the freezing temperatures. This mine is just the perfect haven for bats to stay protected from the harsh winters” -Rob Mies
Mies says the mine was used to extract silica, a substance used for absorbing moisture. Mies says the silica and excellent ventilation are helping the bats avoid White Nose Syndrome, a deadly fungus that has killed millions of bats across the country.