International Bat Night

A bat laying on a rock in a lit cave. This is just one of the species fo bats to be celebrated on International Bat Night.

When you’re out at night you might notice some small creatures swooping and flying in the sky. These aren’t birds–they’re bats! 

Bats are small winged mammals, but some species can be rather large. For example, the flying fox, native to Australia, has a five-foot wingspan. These animals have adapted to live in deserts, mountain ranges, caves, and almost every other biome. International Bat Night is a day to celebrate these unique creatures! 

It’s no lie that bats have garnered a bad reputation. This is largely due to misinformation and prejudice against the species. They are integral to many environments and have amazing qualities.  

Common questions and misconceptions 

As with many species, wildlife veterinarians and scientists have yet to discover everything there is to know about bats. It’s important to spread the right information when it comes to these beautiful creatures.  

Do all bats have rabies?  

According to the FWC, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, most bats do not have rabies. They are a rabies vector, which means they can spread the disease to other animals. Other mammals such as foxes and raccoons have a greater chance of passing on rabies than bats. International Bat Night raises awareness on this topic.

Do vampire bats exist? 

Yes, they are native to Mexico and parts of Central and South America. However, they feed on livestock and birds for food. Most bats are afraid of humans and rarely ever feed on them. The majority of bats feed on insects and even fruit. 

What do bats sound like? 

Bats emit high-pitched sounds that can be compared to clicks, chirps, and screeches. Bats use sound to navigate through the air and locate food. This is called echolocation, and dolphins use the same method! They can determine where objects are with sound waves alone.  

Spreading awareness with International Bat Night

We must stay informed about the animals that call Earth home. With proper knowledge and care, we can better understand each other. For International Bat Night, take some time and see if you can spot these creatures in the night sky!  

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