🎃 October 28 🎃
Cats, Bats, and Spiders . . . Oh My!
Despite literature, movies and lore, three are only three species of “vampire” bats who “drink” the blood of other mammals; none of these are among the 40 species of North American bats.
Bats are very beneficial to ecosystem and to humans:
They consumer up to 1,200 mosquitoes an hour – more environmentally friendly and quieter than your backyard bug zapper.
Bat species that live on fruit and nectar act as pollinators – just like bees.
Bat droppings, called guano, are one of the richest fertilizers.
Bats can hunt in total darkness by using echo location to find and chase down their prey.
Bats can fly up to 60 mph, making them the planet’s fastest mammal.
Large bat colonies can reach in the millions of individuals. Each bat baby has its own unique scent and call so mothers can find them.
Bats are in trouble and need our help. Most North American bat species are in decline, and many are listed as endangered due to loss of habitat and an invasive fungal disease – white nose syndrome – that is decimating the population. Bats typically have only one pup a year making them especially vulnerable.
The undeserved “bad rap” bats have, especially at Halloween, increased in 2020 by the probability that COVID-19 originated with a bat population in China.
The Bracken Bat Cave in Texas is home to the world’s largest bat colony, with millions of Mexican free-tailed bats roosting there each year between March and October.
Ask Congress to help save bat habitat.
An interesting DIY project: build a bat house
Information taken from: The Nature Conservancy website.