When someone mentions bats, we all think of that spooky creatures with large wings, sucking blood form the humans necks, like a Dracula. Luckily for us, that’s not true! There is much more to these nocturnal creatures than meets the eyes. Did you know bats are the second most common group of mammals after rodents? Of course, while some weigh less then a penny, others have a wingspan of over six feet!
Bats-who are they?
These mammals, with their forelimbs adapted as wings, are only mammals in the world which can fly, and they are remarkably good at it. Also, their name on Greek means “hand wing”. That’s because bats have four long fingers and a thumb, each connected to the next by a thin layer of skin. Their length can go from 2 to 11 inches, with a wingspan from 5 inches, to astonishingly 6 feet!
Microbats and megabats.
Yes, there are two main types of these interesting animals. Most of them are microbats, which means they eat insects, and hunt by night. The famous vampire bats are the only species of microbats that feed on blood. But, as its said on the beginning, they don’t drink human blood, they prefer cattle and horse blood. On the contrary, megabats live in the tropics, and like hummingbirds, eat fruit, nectar, and pollen. Also, this specie has stronger sense of smell, but smaller ears.
Where can we find bats?
Well, almost everywhere! Except in polar regions, extreme deserts, and a few isolated islands. They spend their daylights hiding in roosts around the tropics, dense forest, and wetlands. Bats go to roosts to rest. The common roosts are caves, tree hollows and old buildings. So, if you found yourself in these places, watch your head, they have poor sight!
Like our friend crocodile, bats also hibernate. Depending on the season and time of the year, they choose their homes. For example, in the winter, some may hibernate in caves, and in the summer, they’ll return to an attic. Because good roosts can be hard to find, many live in giant colonies with millions of other bats. But, no matter where they spend their time, all bats sleep upside down.
Scientists are not sure why these diverting animals do this, but there is one theory: Bats have to fall into flight, which makes hanging upside down the best way to escape quickly. Do you have another theory?
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