"Cave Animals" Top 5 Page for this destination Mammoth Cave National Park Favorite Tip by staindesign

Mammoth Cave National Park Favorites: 7 reviews and 16 photos

  the ranger
by staindesign

Favorite thing: The low down on the cave life is pretty simple: Bats, crickets, spiders, salamanders, crayfish, etc.

Basically our tour guide told us that during this time, October, the bats are beginning to come into the caves to begin hibernation. She told us that the most common bat is the Eastern Pipistrelle or a bat that looks like a "hairy chicken nugget". They are about the size of your thumb and have the wing span of an unsharpened pencil. On the cave tours the guides are always looking for them to point out, but don't take any flash photography of them, because they don't want to be woken up!

The deal on the crickets! Okay, these things freak me out! They look like they are spiders, they have a very small body and long skinny legs. Their antlers or feelers are extra long and look like an extra pair of legs, looks like 6 legs total. I was told they have these to help them feel around in the dark. They spend most of their lives in the caves, but do venture out to eat.

Salamanders are quite interesting, the one we saw was shy in the light. He was very brightly colored, which surprised me because i thought since he is in the dark most of the time he wouldn't need the color like many other animals in the cave. There really aren't many compared to crickets, but we were lucky to see one out of 3 cave tours.

The crayfish and other water animals, we weren't able to see. They show these animals on the brochure, but there isn't really anyway to see these guys because they are located on the 5 level of the cave system where the river is located and they don't take tours that low. I do believe you may have a chance if you take the "wild cave tour" because that is splunking and you will go deeper than the average tour.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Oct 9, 2007
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