Cave Talk

Cave Talk

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Cave Talk
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Cave Talk
National Cave Association
National Cave Association
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Resource Management ( local )
serial ( sobekcm )
United States


Cave Talk is a publication of the National Caves Association, a non-profit trade association founded in 1965 by a small group of private show cave owners. These initial members sought to bring together show cave owners and operators from across the United States to promote the show cave industry to the public, to share information and ideas, and to lobby for legislation favorable to the show cave industry.

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University of South Florida
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University of South Florida
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Open Access - Permission by Publisher
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K26-05328 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.5328 ( USFLDC Handle )

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Robert A. Holt PO Box 625, Cobleskill, NY 12043 E xecutive Director Phone: 518 231 5420 E mail: De cember 2017 Message from the Executive Director your thinking caps. How many of you remember selling a puzzle and identical poster in your gift shop perhaps back in the 19 9 wi the poster framed and hanging in the room as you exit their cave. Those who reproduce it or do an updated version. with the folks at White Mountain Puzzles who did this for us back in 1996 and unfortunately after search ing their files the original no longer exists Therefore, reproducing it is out of the question. to hear your thoughts if you think we should produce a new puzzle and poster We could do this in a way similar to our playing cards where those of you who want to Please email your thoughts to me or Claudia Yundt our Retail Chair On behalf of the Officers, the Board of Directors and myself I want to wish you y our staff and your families a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanuk k ah and a Happy & Prosper ous New Year! Bob Holt OFFICERS President : John Graves Luray Caverns, VA Ph: 540 743 6551 john.graves@luraycaverns. com Vice President : Al Mathis DeSoto Caverns, AL Ph: 256 872 6240 Secretary Treasurer : Bob Holt National Caves Association Ph: 518 231 5420 Past President : Patty Perlaky Cave Without A Name, TX Ph: 830 537 4212 REGIONAL DIRECTORS Region One : (CT, DE, ME, MA, NH, NJ, NY, PA, RI, VT) Currently Vacant Contact Bob Holt Ph: 518 231 5420 Region Two : (MD, VA, WV, KY) Eric Helton Diamond Caverns, KY Ph: 270 749 2233 Region Three : (IL, IN, MI, OH) Claudia Yundt Squire Boone Caverns, IN Ph: 812 732 4382 Region Four : (AR, IA, KS, MO, NE) Dennis Boyer War Eagle Cavern, AR Ph: 479 789 2909 Region Five : (MN, MT, ND, SD, WI) Tom Hagen Rushmore Cave, SD Ph: 605 255 4467 Region Six : (CA, ID, NV, OR, WA, AK, HI, Barbados, Bermuda) Matt Doyle Lake Shasta Caverns, CA Ph: 800 795 CAVE Region Seven : (AZ, CO, NM, UT, WY) Steve Beckley Glenwood Caverns, CO Ph: 970 945 4CAV Region Eight : (LA, OK, TX) Ed Mayfield Caverns of Sonora, TX Ph: 325 387 3105 Region Nine : (AL, FL, GA, MS, NC, SC, TN ) Lisa McClung Lost Sea, TN Ph: 423 337 6616 D IRECTOR AT LARGE Denise Bell Seneca Caverns, OH Ph: 419 483 6711 D IRECTOR EMERITUS Steve Runkle Cave of the Winds, CO Ph: 719 685 5444


Thousands of bats slaughtered annually in Asia end up on Ebay and Etsy for artsy Americans Bats are being killed in Southeast Asia specifically to sell to American dead bat enthusiasts, much of the supply on eBay and Etsy. Between m id 2000 and 2013, the United States imported 114,927 bats. A total of 113,200 of those bats were dead nearly 9,000 slaughtered bats per year. Most of these bats end up for sale on eBay, Etsy, Facebook, Instagram and in brick and mortar oddities stor es. The carnage has some conservationists and bat enthusiasts worried. Merlin Tuttle, a bat expert at Merlin Bat Conservation huge losses, mostly due to various kinds of over to Newsweek He says a cave that used to house hundreds of thousands of bats at a time is now comp letely empty. The vast majority of the bats come from Indonesia, the leading exporter of legally cleared wildlife shipments into the United States. But the legal requirements for export do not require an explanation of how, why or by whom the animals were killed. And the legality of those deaths is highly questionable. The f dead bats for sale. Some sellers note that no animals were killed or poached. But Tuttle says such sound practice cannot possibly hold true for all sellers. the bats you've seen advertised are not sustainably quickly destroyed by ants or other arthropods or consumed Some fruit growers kill some of the kinds of bats being sold in order to protect their crops. But, says Tuttle, bats that are killed by durian fruit farmers are collected in nets and decompose until the net is full and drops. These bats would not be suitab le for mummifying and selling on eBay. Those who say they got their bats from a bat farm are says. Bats are very difficult to breed in captivity and only birth one to two baby bats (pu ps) per female annually. Who is buying all these bat carcasses? Certain alternative communities, such as taxidermists, oddities collectors and our following New Jersey He emphasizes that most goths, who tend to identify with dark moods, music and clothing caught dead hanging these dead bats ar he explains, believe that owning mummified bats is cool and edgy, like Ozzy Osbourne biting the head off of one. Allison White, a research scientist with EcoHealth Alliance, a nonprofit focused on wildlife and emerging diseases, data Enforcement Management Information System (FWS LEMIS.) She searched out the name of eve ry species of bat and kept a tally for Newsweek Here is the data she found on imports to the U.S. from mid 2000 to 2013: This bat was imported from Indonesia and sold on Facebook A flying fox, which is a large type of fruit bat found in Indonesia.


There were 2803 total shipments involving bats across all categories. Live bats: 59 shipments; 1,727 total live bats Dead bats whole body: 390 shipments, totaling 44,398 dead bats. Bat skeletons (substantially whole): 119 shipments; 6,641 bat skeletons Specimens (scientific or museum): 2,096 shipments; 58,456 specimens (There were also 6KG of bat specimens in those shipments) Skulls: 70 shipments; 1,978 skulls Of the 2,734 total shipments in those categories, 96 of them were refused entry to the U.S. (2,638 were cleared). exported (n = 26), or seized (n = 64). These numbers may be conservative because many imports are simply never seen. Legally importing bats requires an import/export license with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which costs $100 per year. The exporter has to include a CITES (Convention on International T rade of Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna) export paper and documentation that the animals were preserved in a way that would kill off any diseases. But importing off the radar may not be that difficult, leaving many dead bat arrivals uncounted. reported ry box, every e extremely difficult to produce without bats to pollinate them, even in orchard Tuttle. he says. Kristin Hugo Newsweek Thanks to our friends Mike Warner and Emi ly Davis of Speleobooks for passing along this article. Steve Runkle retires after 35 years at Cave of the Winds In the blink of an eye 35 years has passed. We are so blessed and thankfu says Shelley Runkle. Steve Runkle has decided to retire. At a dinner he was given the Santa Claus slot machine decoration. We wish Steve and Shelley many happy years of retirement and we continue to look forward to seeing them at convention time! Grant Carey presents Steve Runkle with a Santa Claus slot machine decoration upon his retirement


International Gift Exposition in the Smokies A great turn out again this year for the annual gift show and dinner for those caves who attended. It certainly was great seeing everyone! A bit of Halloween celebration was enjoyed by those who gathered. Cave Buyers Dinner


Sandy Creek Mining Company wins IAAPA award Terrie Woodruff Woodruff family team won at the recent IAAPA show in Orlando. Every year the IAAPA Attractions Expo Exhibitor Awards Program grows stronger and gains prestige. Sandy Creek Mining Company is the perfect example bri ng ing their products, and services to the forefront of the attractions industry with the Best New Product and Best Exhibit awards. Recognition of the best booths at IAAPA Attractions Expo is based on booth design, branding, staffing, and overall appeal. Sandy Creek team members are always dressed in uniform and change up their color shirts each day. No one leaves for the show without a perfectly The purpose is t o create an elite award program as viewed by the amusement and attractions industry and t o recognize outstanding new products and supplier members operating in attractions. To be eligible to win m embers of IAAPA that are exhib iting at IAAPA Attractions Expo must meet the award criteria as outlined with the Best Exhibit and Best New Products award information and t o win a panel of judges comprised of IAAPA facility members, evaluate s all entries and select the winners in several Best New Product and Best Exhibit categories. Congratulations to the Sandy Creek Mining Company who won the IAAPA Associations Expo 2017 Brass Ring Award for Second Place Best Exhibit for their booth in the 900 1,200 Square F eet category. The benefits for members winnin g the award include: Receive a prestigious award to display in your facility. Listing on the Awards Winners display during IAAPA Attractions Expo. Printed in the Show Daily newspaper during IAAPA Attractions Expo. Identified in press releases issued to industry trade publications. Recognized during the IAAPA Brass Ring Award ceremony. Printed in a future issue of IAAPA's Funworld magazine. Posted on the IAAPA website. Given the IAAPA Brass Ring Award Winner logo to be used on your website or advertising materials.


Presley Mayfield the future of our cave industry is in good hands with this eight year old hard at work If you attend convention you certainly know Presley Mayfield daughter of Ed & Shalayne M ayfield of Caverns of Sonora Texas Those of you who have not had the pleasure of meeting this sweet young child, Presley loves the cave and all aspect s not in school, she spends every possible minute down at the cave. She works alongside her Aunt Gerry Ingham and her cousin Louise does it. Presley is so eager to learn the business from the ground up. Or should we say the cave up! Yes, she has even followed the guides through the cave to learn the tour spiel. When her elementary school class visited the cave this past spring, Presley gave the tour to her classmates. What a proud guide she was! on November 24 She FINALLY got to go on the Wild Tour She has asked for years to be able to do this She spent 5 hours belly crawling (some through water!) climbing and poking her head through every Thank s goes to her cousin Colton Moore for guiding her She will NEVER forget this experience Recently her mom Shalayne posted on the NCA homework assignment. (Pictured to the Right) Shalayne says This precious little gem was found in our hometown friends and exper iences we have made every year. Even better that we share it with the little ones and they see how important these natural treasures are Keep doing all the cool things you are doing Presley, we are all so very proud of you and for the love you show towards Caverns of Sonora and all the caves around the USA and the world! We all love you and we will see you at the next convention! Presley Mayfield and her cousin Colton Moore after completing her first wild tour in Caverns of Sonora


Christmas cheer with a new holiday tradition Take a magical journey to the North Pole to visit Santa via Ruby Falls Christmas Underground beginning Friday, Dec ember 1 st This holiday adventure offers a unique, Chr istmas lights twinkle throughout the day. Open noon to 8 p.m. every Thursday through Sunday Dec. 1 10, then daily Dec. 14 23, Christmas Underground is a holiday tradition for Santa believers and kids at heart! stmas Underground attendance continues to looking for ways to add unique and exciting events to their holiday traditions. New this year, we are introducing a section of Joy stone City where guests experience Guests travel a secret passage through the caverns of Ruby Falls to the North Pole V and crack a souvenir geode to take home! The Northern Lights, Sugar Plum Fairy Village and a glittering ice cave await, on a journey that leads to a special individualized exp erience with Santa. Around every corner, the magical decorations, interactive activities and festive atmosphere create a charming experience and wonderful holiday memories. Lake Shasta Caverns Rainbow Wonderful view of a rainbow on Lake Shasta. Sabine Rosales of Lake Shasta Caverns says :


Rickwood Caverns State Park These young ladies are having fun getting ready for Santa at the Underground Workshop at Rickwood Caverns State Park Fantastic Caverns It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in our visitor center! Agate slices from Natures Touch, our gift shop, used as ornaments for our Christmas tree. Indian Echo Caverns Take your picture with any of our Holiday displays and post it to our page for a chance to win a $100 gift shop gift certificate. All photos must be posted by end of day Dec. 24th to be eligible to win. DeSoto Caverns Winter "Underland" for a family fun event for all ages wi th holiday treats, classic Christmas movies, caroling, and sing a longs, as well as a special visit from St. Nicholas himself.


WNS Report The Echo Meter Touch 2, a plug in model for Android devices, was released in time for National Bat Week (October 24 31). at $179, it allows users to listen to, record and identify a wide variety of bats by their echolocation calls. Shell Oil donated $1.3 million dollars to help save bats. Twenty bat houses are being installed along the Atlantic city Expressway. S everal newspapers in New York state ran articles reminding the public to avoid caves. There are more reports showing declines in populations in Arkansas, Wisconsin and Connecticut. Researchers at the Forest Service have found that the collagen elastin bundles that criss cross bats' wings can identify individual bats much like fingerprints. A Brazilian free tailed bat was found on an island west of Vancouver. P rior to this, the northernmost sightings were southern Oregon.a Canadian scientists have developed a powder made of probiotics bacteria found naturally on bat wings that fight WNS. They hope to spread the powder on entrances to roosts, increasing the density of the good bacteria which will prevent WNS. A researcher at a federal lab in Madison will be treating bats with quick bursts of UV light and will monitor them during hibernation. He hopes that applying UV light in the correct dose will increase their survival. Patty Perlaky WNS Chair N CKRI N ews Dear Friends, Once a year I share our news announcements with friends who are interested in what the National Cave and Karst s newest annual report, which this year covers our work from July 2016 through June 2017. That report and all other NCKRI publications are available for free viewing or download from htt p:// We thank all of you for your interest and support. mail list, please let me know. We send messages like this 1 4 times each month and we George George Veni, PhD President, International Union of Speleology and Executive Director National Cave and Karst Research Institute 400 1 Cascades Avenue Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220 6215 USA Office: +1 575 887 5517 Mobile: +1 210 863 5919 Fax: +1 575 887 5523


Claudia s artistic holiday baking Claudia Yundt, Squire Boone Caverns, has many talents besides running a cave, and her farm She spends quite a b it of time in her kitchen. As you can see she s made these cute little guys. Claudia says: When your husband (Chip Meek) is a cop and you are looking for an excuse not to do what you should be doing Merry Christmas Calendar of Events Tucson Gem and Mineral Shows 201 8 Tucson, Arizona, January 27 February 1 1 201 8 NCA Mid Winter Board of Directors Meeting, Renaissance Airport Hotel, St. Louis, Missouri, February 2 6 28 201 8 The Sinkhole Conference, Shepherdstown, West Virginia, April 2 6, 2018 National Cave and Karst Day, June 6, 2018 NSS Convention 201 8, Helena, Montana, July 29 August 4, 2018 NCA Convention 2018, Host: Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, Glenwood Springs, Colorado, September 24 28, 2018 ISCA 8 th Congress 2018, Genga, Italy, October (Dates TBD) International Gift Exposition in the Smokies 2018 Gatlinburg, Tennessee, (Dates TBD) IAAPA 201 8 Orlando, Florida, November 1 3 16, 2018 National Cave and Karst Day, June 6, 201 9 NCA Convention 2019, Host: Ruby Falls, Chattanooga Tennessee, (Dates TBD) IAAPA 201 9 Orlando, Florida, November 1 9 22 2019 National Cave and Karst Day, June 6, 20 20 NCA Convention 2020 Host: Lake Shasta Caverns, Lakehead California, (Dates TBD) National Cave and Karst Day, June 6, 20 21 Got News? Please make sure you let Bob Holt know when you have news to share with the membership regarding you and your cave. It is the goal of the NCA office to continue producing monthly issues of Cave Talk and this can only happen when you help with the sharing of your news. Please send your articles, photographs to January 201 8 Cave Talk Deadline Please have all articles to Bob Holt no later than December 15. Thank you


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