FAQs Frequently Asked Questions – Viewing Guide Congress Bridge Bats


What time do the bats come out under Congress Bridge?

7:30PM – 9:00PM
The Congress Bridge Bats make their nightly departure 30-60 minutes before sunset. During bat season this can range from 7:30PM – 9:00PM because the sun sets at different times through the year.

How do I view Congress Bridge bats?
Best Viewing Locations

The first major bat column to emerge normally exits along the river edge at the southeast end of the bridge, with the column heading east along the river. Because this is where bats are first seen, visitors tend to congregate there for viewing.

Where do you park for Congress Bridge bats?

The Vic Mathias Shores have a free parking lot for the early birds. You will find them at 900 Riverside Drive… or by following this link! Alternatively, South Congress Avenue also offers free parking. The address is 834 S Congress Avenue and it is relatively close to the bridge where the bats proliferate.

Do the Austin Bats always come out?

Austin Bats: Here’s Exactly How To See Them! | The Austin Things
The Austin bats come out from mid-March through late October or early November. There aren’t specific dates, because it depends on the weather and the sunset time, but basically every night during Daylight savings Time you can expect to see the Austin bats emerging.

Do the Congress Bridge bats ever not come out?

But watch out, they do not always come out. Was there in season and saw just 2-3 bats. Was told the same was true the night before. Bring your margarita and someone you enjoy talking to while you wait for the big moment – or disappointment.

How long after sunset do bats come out?

When Day Fades Away, Bats Come Out to Play | Golden Gate …
Bats are largely nocturnal, meaning they are most active after sundown. Specifically, little brown bats emerge from their dark roosts two-to-three hours after dusk to feed. After feeding, they return to their roosts to sleep out the rest of the night and day hanging upside down.

More than 1.5 million bats emerge each night at dusk, as they have for more than two decades, from the bridge's underbelly on food runs that blacken the downtown Austin, Texas sky.

Why are there so many bats in Austin Texas?

Why are there so many bats in Austin? – South Congress Bridge …
Mexican free-tailed bats are the species that call the Congress Avenue Bridge home. They migrate to Austin from Mexico in the early spring and summer months to give birth and raise their young. The bridge’s concrete crevices provide the perfect temperature and humidity for the bats to roost comfortably during the day.

Beautiful Sunset falls on the Austin Skyline as water enthusiast kayak and canoe on Lake Austin
Cheerful attractive Austin woman wavers her hands with excitement on the Congress Ave. Bat Bridge in downtown Austin, Texas.

Where do Austin bats go in winter?

It’s Bat-Watching Season! Here are 10 Facts About the Mexican …
Most of the Congress Avenue bridge bats migrate back to Texas in early to late March, making them “well adapted to the Austin lifestyle,” because they enjoy spending winter in Mexico, returning in time for South by Southwest, sleeping late, and basically embracing “a slacker lifestyle” until late spring and early

Spectators crowd the rail as Austin's Bats Swarm out of the Congress Ave. Bridge amid a beautiful gold sunset
The 1.5 million bats that call Austin's Congress Ave. Bridge home join in with the nightlife as they come out every night at dusk to feed on insects. The bats have been a spectacle for passers by to enjoy, as a strip of sky turns black as they fly overhead.

What do bats eat?

All bats living in the United States and Canada eat insects, except 3 species of nectar-feeding bats living along the Texas-Arizona border. “bugs” such as mosquitoes, bats are a natural form of insect control. For instance, one little brown bat can catch 600 mosquitoes or more an hour.

Bats In Flight Reveal Unexpected Aerodynamics amid blue skies
Flexible, highly articulated bat wings give bats more options for flight than birds: more lift, less drag, greater maneuverability.

Do bats hate cold weather?

What to Do About Bats in Winter – Varment Guard Wildlife Services
Bats can’t survive freezing temperatures (even when they’re hibernating). So, how cold can a bat survive? Any roost bats shelter in for the winter must be at least 45 degrees, which is why folks often find bats in their garage in winter.

Spectacular sunset to watch Austin's Congress Bridge Bats take flight
Spectacular sunset to watch Austin's Congress Bridge Bats take flight

What is the main predator of bats?

Main predators: owls, hawks, snakes, raccoons. Snakes are a common predator of bats that consume fruits.Aug 12, 2016

Aerial view of the Annual Bat Fest on top of the Congress Avenue Bridge in downtown Austin, Texas
The Annual Bat Fest features 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats emerging from under the Congress Ave Bridge at dusk, with live music, arts & crafts vendors.

What are 5 interesting facts about bat?

5 Surprising Facts About Bats

  • There Are More Than 1,200 Species of Bats. Mexican free-tailed bat.
  • Bats Are the Only Mammals Capable of Flight. leaf-nosed bat.
  • Bat Droppings Can Be Used to Make Gunpowder.
  • Not All Bats Hang Upside Down.
  • Bats Aren’t Really Blind.
Streams of 1.5 million Mexican free-tail bats take flight from underneath the South Congress Avenue Bridge over Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin, Texas
In Austin, Texas, a colony of Mexican free-tailed bats summers (they winter in Mexico) under the Congress Avenue Bridge ten blocks south of the Texas State Capitol. It is the largest urban colony in North America, with an estimated 1,500,000 bats. Each night they eat 10,000 to 30,000 lb (4,500 to 13,600 kg) of insects.

Viewing the Congress Avenue Bridge bats in Austin, Texas, is a magical experience that combines natural wonder with urban life. By following this guide, you’ll be well-prepared to make the most of your visit, ensuring that you witness this awe-inspiring spectacle and gain a deeper appreciation for the rich biodiversity and unique character of Austin. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the unforgettable moment when the bats take flight against the Texas sunset.

The crowds of spectators explode with cheers as the bats take flight during a spectacular pink sunset
Austin is home to the largest urban bat colony in North America. Approximately 1.5 million bats have made the Congress Avenue Bridge their home. The bats settled here after a renovation of the bridge in 1980 created crevices that were perfect for bats to take refuge in against predators. Every spring the Mexican free tailed bats migrate north to the bridge to give birth and raise their offspring. Come summer time, the bats can be seen each evening at dusk as they emerge for their nightly excursions to rid the city of pesky insects before heading back to central Mexico in the fall.