Bats are mammals of the order Chiroptera; with their forelimbs adapted as wings, they are the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight. There may be more myths about bats than any other animal. Some people think bats are blind bloodsuckers that fly into your hair and carry rabies.
Scientific name: Chiroptera
Higher classification: Laurasiatheria
Mass: Common pipistrelle: 0.18 oz, Little brown bat: 0.29 oz.
Wingspan: Lesser horseshoe bat: 7.6 – 10 in., Mediterranean horseshoe bat: 12 – 13 in.
Length: Common pipistrelle: 1.6 in., Little brown bat: 2.1 in.
Families of bats: 19
Genera of bats: 187
Species of bats: 951
- Bats are the only mammals capable of true flight.
- Out of nearly 1,000 bat species, only 3 feed on blood, and it is usually that of cattle.
- Almost 1,000 bat species can be found worldwide. In fact, bats make up a quarter of all mammal species on earth!
- 70% of bats consume insects, making them a great natural pest control.
- While some bat populations number in the millions, others are dangerously low or in decline.
- A single little brown bat can eat up to 1000 mosquitoes in a single hour.
- Bats can be found almost anywhere in the world except the polar regions and extreme deserts.
- Some bats have evolved a highly sophisticated sense of hearing using echolocation.
- Bats find shelter in caves, crevices, tree cavities and buildings.
- To survive the winter some species of bat migrate, others hibernate, and yet others go into torpor.
- The gestation period for a bat is 40 days to 6 months and they have just one pup.For their size, bats are the slowest reproducing mammals on Earth.