Bats are among the most misunderstood creatures across the world. It may be because they hang upside down, or have long pointy teeth; or perhaps it’s the correlation with Dracula and vampires that have given bats such an unfair stereotype. Furthermore, the stigma of rabies and disease cloud society’s perception of bats, which are actually incredible and interesting mammals who play a vital ecological role. Perhaps by learning more about bats, you can clear up any misconceptions you may have had in the past. In fact, you can start right now!
Continue reading to learn some noteworthy facts about Microchiroptera bats.
🦇 Bats Are the Only Mammal Capable of True Flight.
Many people do not realize that bats are in fact, mammals; and on top of that, the only mammals that can actually fly. They have wings similar to the anatomy of a human hand, with elongated fingers connected by a stretchy membrane. They are amazing during flight. They are fast and swift, using propulsion to push forward using their airfoil thin wings.
🦇 Vampire Bats Do Not Actually “Suck” Blood.
Three species of vampire bats are known to exist around the world. These three species of bats do not actually “suck” blood from other mammals. They will, however, lick it up after emitting a bite to a cow or other large warm-blooded animal.
🦇 A Single Bat Can Consume Over 1000 Small Insects in One Hour.
Bats have insatiable appetites and can eat up to 200 tons of insects each night. That is a lot of feeding! They use their echolocating abilities to dive and dart for flying insects with acute precision.
🦇 Bats are Not Blind, But Use Echolocation to Navigate the Dark and Hunt for Prey.
Bats are not blind, but they do not have great vision, especially in the dark. But in the dark is when they are awake and busy, so they have to use other methods of communication and navigation to get around. This is called echolocation. Bats emit beeps and then listen for the beep to bounce back off of a solid structure. Then they know where they are.
🦇 Hibernating Species of Bats Like to Show Off During Mating Season.
Hibernating species of microbat will put on an annual flying show, showing off their agile flying and acrobatic skills in an attempt to court female bats. They will fly in huge swarms, darting and dipping, and performing impressive aerobatics. Once the show dies down, bats will couple up and find seclusion to mate. Although it is not yet proven whether or not female bats prefer more agile males, because of this fascinating phenomenon it is certainly a theory among researchers.
🦇 Bat Species Makes Up Nearly 25% of All Mammals.
There are more than 900 species of bats in the world, all broken up into different categories and classifications. The Chiroptera Order is the first class in which bats are categorized. From there they are split into suborders, genera, and then species.