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EAA installing monitor stations at Bracken Bat Cave

Stations will collect data on Edwards Aquifer recharge capacity

At the Bracken Bat Cave near Natural Bridge Caverns, scientists with the Edwards Aquifer Authority are researching more than just bats. They are installing weather monitoring stations.
At the Bracken Bat Cave near Natural Bridge Caverns, scientists with the Edwards Aquifer Authority are researching more than just bats. They are installing weather monitoring stations.

At the Bracken Bat Cave near Natural Bridge Caverns, scientists with the Edwards Aquifer Authority are researching more than just bats. They are installing weather monitoring stations.

Dr. Marcus Gray is the senior hydrogeologist for the Edwards Aquifer Authority. He said the weather stations are an important addition.

"So with this network of weather stations, we're collecting data that can be used to calculate evapotransporation, or how much moisture is being pulled from the air through evaporation or plant transportation," said Gray.

All of this is to keep an eye on the Edwards Aquifer and its recharge. Temperatures and rainfall are used to calculate how much water is making it into the aquifer.

One of the most important measurements that these scientists are taking is soil moisture.

"The soil moisture is a very useful tool to tell us how much precipitation it takes to actually get recharge into the ground or runoff into the streams," Gray said.

Eight weather stations are operational now and three more will be up and running by the end of the year. 

You can see the data that the EAA is collecting for yourself on their website.

The hope is that with more research, scientists can learn to handle our most precious natural resource more efficiently.

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