LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Rosemarie Curcio’s patients are small, cute, fuzzy-and oh, yes, they have wings. Rosemarie is the bat specialist for Raven Ridge Wildlife Center. She says bats should be hibernating this time of year, but that doesn’t always happen.

“I’ve received seven bats, from November through now, the beginning of January,” she says.

But what brings them in? We had a lot of above-average temperatures in November and December-and when heat happens, bats can get kind of ferhoodled.

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“They may wake up from where they’ve been hibernating, and feel a need to go out,” Curcio said. “And then the next day cold is back, they may not find their way back into their hibernation area, and then they’re kind of stuck. And that’s when hopefully people find them and call Raven Ridge.”

Curcio will be looking after them for the next few months, giving them a safe place to stay, and a gourmet diet of live mealworms.

“I take out the worms that I’m going to actually use for that day, and I will put them in a separate container,” she says. “Add some extra moisture, food, apples, sweet potatoes, something that will get more and more into their system-then they go into the system of the bats.”

“I also sprinkle extra vitamins on them,” she adds. “They’re seasoned.”

The bats seem to be enjoying the house special, but Rosemarie’s noticed something unusual this year about her houseguests.

“I have only received one male,” Curcio explains. “I’ve been getting mostly females, I’m not quite sure why. But I did reach out to the other bat rehabbers that I work with, to see if they they were finding the same pattern, and they’re not. So it’s just me.” she says with a laugh.

The situation does have its advantages. “You can put large groups of them together and they basically get along. You can’t do so with males.”

But it also means Curcio can anticipate a few blessed events. “They actually mate in the fall, store the sperm, and fertilize in the spring,” she explains. “So what happens if they’re in captivity, it’s a little bit warmer here than their hibernation spot, and they will start gestating and give birth. They can give birth to twins, or one. Usually it’s twins. But if I don’t get them out before they give birth, I have to take care of them longer to make sure the babies are fully weaned and they’re all flying well.”

At least Curcio can leave rearing the babies to their moms. She often has to foster orphan baby bats, And it really makes her appreciate what the mothers can do.

“It’s interesting to see how much faster the pups grow with the mother than the pups I raise,” she says. “So obviously the mother knows exactly what she’s doing and has the right milk formula for her.”

She also appreciates that attitudes about bats seem to be improving. “I do get people now that are telling me that ‘I’m a little afraid of it but I don’t want to see anything happen to it.’ I feel that is progress. And I’ve been getting a lot of people right now who are very positive, like ‘I will go anything to get this bat to you.’ there was one gentleman this winter who drove two hours to get the bat to us. And he keeps in touch, he wants to know, and he’s also willing to bring it back when it’s time to leave.”

The moma bats and their pups will most likely be released to the wild sometime in April or May. It all depends on the weather.

“I definitely don’t release unless I know nighttime temperatures are fifty degrees or above.” says Rosemarie, “And of course, I look for the amount of insects that will be available outside. It’s not like there’s going to be one day, I wait for a stretch of warm days, especially looking for nighttime temperatures.”