New Jersey’s ‘Bat Cave,’ home to exotic animals, needs a new home
The Wildlife and Conservation Center in Garfield, better known as the “Bat Cave” is looking for a new home.
The center has been in its current home since 2017, but the building has been sold and Joseph D’ Angeli, who owns and runs the facility, says the new landlords have been unresponsive in his attempts to negotiate a new lease once the current one expires at the end of March, 2022.
According to NorthJersey.com, the center is home to: a kinkajou, a coatimundi, sloths, a dwarf caiman alligator, pythons, lizards, tortoises, toads, tarantulas, giant millipedes and giant Central American cockroaches. But the stars of the show are the bats; over 50 species of bats are housed at the center.
D’ Angeli says that he made considerable improvements to the building, all approved by his landlord while all the while, unbeknownst to D’Angeli, he was negotiating to sell the building. The new landlord has not responded to D’Angeli’s attempt to negotiate a new lease, so he’s afraid he’s going to have to vacate and move all the animals, a process that he says is very traumatic to the exotic species.
D’Angeli says that when he signed his lease in 2017, he was told it was for life, telling NJ.com, “You have to understand, when you move 100 exotic, endangered, critically-important species of animals, you don’t want to move for only three years, you want a new home forever, because every move is traumatic on those animals.”
The center is open for paid tours on the weekends, and D’Angeli often speaks to schools and other groups about animal conservation. His specialty is bats; hence his nickname, “The Batman of New Jersey.”
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle only.
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