QUESTION ASKED: Can the Bat Man of Mexico also be Tequila’s Super Hero?

Bats have long been among the world’s most despised animals, due largely to myth and Hollywood’s fascination with vampire bats. But Rodrigo Medellín is trying to lead a the perceptual transformation of the bat, from blood-sucking demon to unsung nature hero, and hopes a bat-friendly tequila will provide a major public relations boost.

Aside from consuming loads of crop-destroying insects, bats are plant pollinators, and Medellín’s prized lesser long-nosed bat pollinates the cactuslike blue agave plant, the single plant species from which Mexican tequila is produced.

Habitat destruction has been especially harmful to the lesser long-nosed bat, first listed as a threatened species in Mexico in 1994. By 2008 it was well on its way to recovery, thanks largely to Medellín, a tireless advocate who’s been dubbed the “Bat Man of Mexico” for his work with bats.

Clearly this man deserves a Nobel or an Oscar or whatever we can give him.