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Monday, 23 April 2012


There are two main groups of bats: megabats, which eat fruit, and microbats, which mainly eat insects.

Bats are nocturnal, and those native to temperate countries hibernate in winter.

Bats are the second largest order of mammals (after the rodents), representing about one fifth of all classified mammal species worldwide, with about 1,240 bat species divided into two suborders.

Bats can hang upside down without getting dizzy because they don't have enough mass for gravity to mess up their circulatory systems.

Bats like to eat moths, so tiger moths produce ultrasonic clicking sounds that jam a bat's sonar.

Bats can eat up to 1,200 mosquitos an hour and may eat 3,000 insects (their body weight) nightly

Without bats there would be no tequila. It’s made from the agave plant, which is pollinated by bats.

Vampire bats need two tablespoons of blood a day.

Bats are the only mammal that can fly.

Common fruit bat (Rousettus aegyptiacus) flying

The common vampire bat is the only species of bat that can run.

The leg bones of a bat are so thin that no bat (apart from the vampire bat) can walk.

Many microbats have poor sight and orientation and hunt their prey principally by echolocation. They have relatively large ears and many have nose-leaves, fleshy appendages around the nose and mouth, that probably help in sending or receiving the signals, which are squeaks pitched so high as to be inaudible to the human ear.

Larger bats have good eyesight and only use echolocation at night because it's too dark to see. In fact, some bigger bats can see three times better than humans.

Bats groom themselves for an hour a day, rubbing their wings with oil from glands on their faces.

Bats always turn left when exiting a cave.

According to scientists, vampire bat saliva is the best known medicine for keeping blood from clotting.

Bats produce the largest offspring relative to their size of any animal. A pipistrelle bat weighing just 8g may give birth to a 2g baby, a quarter of its bodyweight.

The world's smallest mammal is the bumblebee bat of Thailand, weighing less than a penny.

The largest bat is the giant golden-crowned flying fox which has a wingspan of up to 5ft 7in.

Bats alter their calls to specifically address other individuals, a form of communication that only humans, dolphins and monkeys possess.

The bulldog bat squeaks at 137dB. It is about 30dB louder than a rock concert.

The flying fox is not a fox – it is a bat.

Brazilian free-tailed bats reach speeds of up to 100 miles an hour in little bursts—faster than any other bird or bat previously recorded.

Bats do good work, they keep pests away and they’re also pollinators.which is why they get their own day. April 17th is National Bat Appreciation Day.

The terms “bats” and “batty”, to mean crazy, were first heard in the early 20th century. They came from the slightly earlier “bats in the belfry”, which was first heard in 1880s America

Johann Strauss II's most famous work was the opera Die Fledermaus, which means “the bat”.

Sources Daily, Hutchinson Encyclopedia © RM 2012. Helicon Publishing is division of RM.

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