Let me paint a picture for you; The sun is setting on a warm summer night in Texas. At the entrance to a deep, dark cave, a few bats fly out and begin swirling high up into the air. Then more and more of the small, furry creatures start to appear. Before you know it a whole river of bats is pouring out of the cave, and they keep coming, millions and millions of them…

Does that sound like a scary horror movie? Believe it or not, that exact scene takes place every night, all summer long, at Bracken Cave in Texas, when 20 million bats spiral out of the cave and take to the skies on their nightly hunt for insects, in a truly awe-inspiring reminder of how amazing nature can be.

Just outside of San Antonio, Texas, in Comal County is Bracken Cave, which is the summer home to the largest colony of bats in the world.

An estimated 20 million Mexican Free-tailed Bats roost in the cave from March to October making it the largest known concentration of mammals in the world.

The 100-foot-wide crescent shaped opening to the cave lies at the bottom of a sinkhole, which formed when the roof of the cave collapsed.

The cave and 697 undeveloped acres around it are owned by Austin, Texas-based Bat Conservation International, which restores the land to support native vegetation and an abundant variety of wildlife.

Access to the cave is restricted to protect the habitat of the resident bats.

Bat Conservation International offers evening guided tours to the cave to watch the bats emerge from the cave.

That looks like it would be an amazing thing to witness one day. Although, I can’t help but think that whole area must be covered in guano (bat poop).

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