Interesting Facts About Bat: The Only Mammals That Can Fly

Nearly everyone knows about bats. However, very people know about the fascinating side of this creature. Despite being one of the magnificent animals on earth, they possess some very many interesting facts.
Most people have a lot of misconceptions about bats. Bats are the vast and diverse group of flying mammals. There are more than 1000 species of bats, making a quarter of all known species of animals. They live in all continents except Antarctica. Fifty percent of all known bat species are endangered because of extensive pollution, killing, and deforestation.
Bats are the second largest order of mammals (after rodents), representing almost 20 percent of all recognized animal species globally, with approximately 1,200 bat species. These species are divided two suborders: the highly specialized and echolocating microbats, and the less specialized and mainly fruit-eating megabats, or flying foxes.
Nearly 70 percent of bat species are insectivores. The rest are largely fruit eaters or frugivores. A few species, like the fish-eating bats, feed on creatures other than insects, with the vampire bats feeding on blood, or being hematophagous. Here are some of the interesting facts about bats you probably didn’t know.
1. Bats can ‘see’ in the dark using a unique skill known as echolocation. Bats they make noises and wait for the echo (sound waves to bounce back off objects), if it does not bounce back, then they can fly forward safely. They can determine the distance of different objects by how the sound waves bounce back quickly to them.
2. Vampire bats have tiny and very sharp teeth that can pierce the skin of an animal (human beings included) without them even noticing.
3. Several bats eat insects. Bats can eat about 1,200 mosquitoes in one hour and usually consume their body weight in insects each night, assisting in regulating their population.
4. Over half of the bat species in the US are listed as endangered or in severe decline. On top of habitat loss, one of the greatest dire threat comes from the white nose syndrome, an infection which has decimated bats in the Canada and United States. In a recent breakthrough, the Nature Conservancy successfully collaborated treating and releasing the infected bats.
5. Some bats move south during winter, while others hibernate through cold winter months. Bats can also survive in freezing temperatures during hibernation, even after being enclosed in ice.
6. Bat droppings, known as guano, are one of the richest fertilizers. That is why bat guano was once a huge business. Guano was biggest mineral export before oil in Texas!
7. Austin is a seasonal home to North America’s highest urban population of the Mexican free-tailed bats that live under the Congress Avenue Bridge. About 1.5 million bats live there!
8. The giant golden-crowned flying fox, a rare fruit bat, is the world’s largest bat. It’s a wingspan of 1.5 to 1.8 meters (5 to 6 feet).
9. Small club-footed bats roost inside bamboo stalks in Southeast Asia. The bats squeeze into a small opening to reach their home —approximately the width of a fingernail.
10. Some seeds won’t sprout unless they’ve passed through a bat’s digestive tracts. Also, bats spread tens of thousands of seeds each year from the ripe fruits they eat. Abuts 95 percent of the reforestation of tropical rainforest is a result of seed dispersal from bats.
11. In Europe and North America, bats have been associated with witchcraft for a long time and were usually ingredients in folk potions and medicines.
12. The pallid bat of western North America is entirely immune to the stings of the centipedes and scorpions upon which it feeds.
13. Bats are the only mammals that can fly. You thought it was the winged marmoset! Bats are incredible in the air. Their wings are thin, providing them what’s referred to as, in flight terms, “airfoil.” The power bats need to push forward is known as “propulsion.”

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