What are bats?

Bats are unique mammals that are capable of true flight. Their Latin name Chiroptera translates to Hand Wing, which explains how their wings are actually their hands/digits covered in a membrane.

There are over 1000 species of bats which make up 20% of all mammal species. These species are split into the two suborders Megachiroptera and Microchiroptera, which can be described as old world fruit bats and echolocating bats. There are roughly 18 families of bats, varying greatly in size and morphology. Their diets also range from insectivorous (insects), frugivorous (fruit), carnivorous (meat), nectarivore (nectar), piscivorous (fish), hematophagy (blood).

Bats are found in all continents except for the poles. Their distribution is more concentrated around equator.

  • Noctule (Nyctalus noctula)

  • Serotine (Eptesicus serotinus)

  • Grey long-eared (Plecotus austriacus)

  • Common pipistrelle (Pipistrellus pipistrellus)

  • Soprano pipistrelle (Pipistrellus pygmaeus)

  • Brown long-eared (Plecotus auritus)

  • Whiskered (Myotis mystacinus)

  • Mouse-eared (Myotis myotis)

  • Daubenton's (Myotis daubentonii)

  • Lesser horseshoe (Rhinolophus hipposideros)

  • Greater horseshoe (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum)

Common UK Bats

Top 10 bat facts:

  1. 18 bat species in the UK, 17 of which breed in the UK

  2. Largely insectivores and feed on the wing

  3. Nocturnal (first seen just after sunset)

  4. Can fly of speeds up to 60 mph

  5. Consumer their body weight in food every night 

  6. Life expectancy of up to 30 years

  7. Use echolocation for finding prey

  8. Give birth to live young (pups)

  9. Roost in different places depending on species (trees/old buildings/caves/rooves)

  10. At threat from habitat destruction 

For more bat facts, visit Bat Conservation Trust 

© 2018 by Batacea

Bat and Marine Mammal care is all undertaken by us in a voluntary capacity. Donations to put towards care materials (vet treatment, medic equipment etc) are greatly appreciated. Please consider donating by using the Paypal Donate button to the right. Thank you. 

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