Batty for bats and art

8 10 2009

Do you know how people began associating bats with Halloween?

bat

There are a lot of different stories that explain possible reasons why. One story says that in ancient times, people thought bats had magic powers and their presence indicated there was a ghost around! Another story says that a long time ago when people gathered around bon fires for warmth and warding off spooky spirits, the light from the fire would attract bugs and the bugs would attract bats!

Also, when bats hang upside down to sleep and wrap their wings around them, some people think their wings look like witches’ cloaks. Others think vampires transform into bats. Bats don’t always have a negative image, though—they sure do eat plenty of mosquitos!

handprint bat

To celebrate the upcoming Halloween, you can make your own handprint bat just like the one pictured above. It’s a cool and simple piece of art you can make at home with just paint, paper, and your hands.

First, put some black paint on a paper plate. You don’t have to use black though—you can use purple if you want purple bats!

Then rub your left hand in the paint so your hand is evenly covered. “Stamp” your hand on the paper. Your handprint is one of the bat’s wings.

Now cover your right hand in paint and put your handprint beside the one already on the paper. Let the paint dry and then add details to your bat, such as googly eyes, fangs, or even a bowtie!

Austin is actually home to the largest urban bat colony in North America. Over a MILLION Mexican free-tail bats spend their vacation under Congress Avenue Bridge! There are still some bats lingering around—check out this website to learn more about Austin’s bat colony and how to see them.

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