Bracken Bat Cave

Photo credit: Whitney Martin Photography
Photo credit: Whitney Martin Photography

Located in the Hill Country between Austin and San Antonio, Bracken Cave is home to the largest bat colony in the world. On summer evenings, visitors gather at the mouth of the cave to watch 15 million bats spiral into the air and begin their nightly hunt for food.

Texan by Nature partnered with Bat Conservation International in a two-year effort to align and connect resources in support of the private purchase of 1,500 acres adjoining Bracken Cave that were slated for a 3,500 home residential development.

Photo credit: Whitney Martin Photography
Photo credit: Whitney Martin Photography

Texan by Nature was able to provide critical visibility and assist in donor cultivation to arrive at a solution that made business sense for the developer while helping to secure this critical habitat with additional benefits for aquifer protection and adjoining Golden-Cheeked Warbler habitat.

“We had to find a way to influence both private and public decision makers to gain support for the acquisition of the tract, which required strong support from within Texas’ conservation leadership. There was no better ally than Texan by Nature in bringing this to the attention of such individuals.”

– Andy Walker, Executive Director, Bat Conservation International

Tangible Results


3 Million+

3 Million+ People Enriched by Adjacent “World’s Only” Conservation Feature

Located in the Greater Austin–San Antonio Corridor, 3 million+ people can access and learn about the largest maternal bat colony in the world, conserved on wild Texas Hill Country surrounded by one of the fastest growing mega-metro areas in the country.


$20.5 Million


Texan by Nature worked with BCI to increase visibility and helped to secure the $20.5 million needed to purchase critical habitat from a developer planning a 3500 home residential development. The developer was able to relocate plans and sell property because of public and private funds raised by BCI and the Nature Conservancy.

Natural Resources


Female Mexican Free-Tailed Bats, the largest bat colony in the world


Acres Conserved

Conserved a critical water supply in the Edwards Aquifer Recharge zone for San Antonio and surrounding communities.

Expands Golden-Cheeked Warbler habitat by connecting to adjacent conservation easements.

Related Articles

The San Antonio Express News November 22, 2015

Bracken Cave: an international treasure in San Antonio’s backyard

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