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Bats: Nothing to be Frightened Of printer.gif

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Bats get a bad rap in the animal world. People are generally frightened of bats, however, there is no reason to be frightened of them. Bats are actually some of the most important animals we will encounter in the rainforest. Why? Bats eat thousands and thousands of mosquitoes each night.

Bats are the only mammals that can fly. Since they are covered in fur and give live births, they cannot be classified as birds.

Bats are widely distributed around the world. The only areas that bats aren't found are in the Arctic and Antarctic regions. In fact there are more than 950 known species of bats in the Amazon rainforest alone! There are more species of bats than any other type of mammal in the Amazon.

Bats are nocturnal. This means that they sleep during the day and are active at night. During the day, bats roost upside down in hollow trees, under wooded roofs, or deep inside caves.

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There are two classifications of bats based on size. There are the Megachiroptera bats, which are the mega-sized and medium-sized bats. Then there are the Microchiroptera, or micro-sized bats. The larger bats tend to eat larger foods, such as fruits, small animals and fish. The micro-sized bats tend to eat insects, small fruits, and nectar.

If you would like to learn more about bats, email us and tell us to go on a night-hike in search of some. Or do you think it would be easier for us to find them during the day?

For further exploration, visit the following web sites.

Wilderness Classroom's Rainforest Library: Bats

San Diego Zoo's Animal Bytes

Mongabay's Bat Page

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