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The Nature Conservancy in New Mexico

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Jornada Bat Caves

The Jornada Bat Caves are located on the northern end of the 358,000-acre Armendaris Ranch, owned by Ted Turner. © Jackie Hall/TNC

A bat kite adorns a ranch building and pays tribute to the fact that this site hosts the state’s largest population of Mexican free-tail bats. © Jackie Hall/TNC

Photo of Jornada Bat Cave taken in 1915 for use in “Economic Geology of the Pedro Armendaris Land Grant in South Central New Mexico” by W.H. Storms. © Courtesy Tenneco (Houston Oil & Minerals Exploration Company)

Photo taken in 2011 of one of several entrances to Jornada Bat Caves, which are actually long lava tubes. © Jackie Hall/TNC

Armendaris Ranch staff work with University of New Mexico and the Conservancy to plug a “skylight” excavated by miners to provide easier access to bat guano in the lava cave below. © TNC archives

Eight million migratory bats use the Jornada Bat Caves as a stop-over site. © Jackie Hall/TNC

A cloud of bats emerges at dusk to feast on a buffet of bugs. © Jackie Hall/TNC

The sun sets over the Armendaris Ranch and its protected bat population. © Jackie Hall/TNC

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