AUSTIN, Texas -- As South by Southwest is in full swing, another big event is happening in Central Texas.

Austin's famous mascot, the Mexican free-tailed bat, is returning to the Congress Avenue Bridge after flying south for the winter. Known as 'Bat City,' the largest urban bat colony of 1.5 million bats spends its summers in Austin.

According to Bat Conservation International, the bats travel in groups, but they won't arrive in Austin all at once. Most of them should be here by April.

The bats tend to eat up to 20,000 pounds of bugs every night, conservation officials say. They add that the colony lives in Austin mostly due to the weather and food sources.

Bat Conservation International is a nonprofit helping to protect bats and their habitats. Go here for more facts on Austin's favorite animal.

See more facts about Mexican free-tailed bats with the info-graphic below:

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