When you see a bat, you probably don’t think, “How cute!” People do not associate most bats with anything attractive. In fact, many people are scared of them, though this fear is misplaced.
Out of the many bat species in the world, one of these might get you to use the word “cute.” Meet the bumblebee bat. Like its namesake, it is tiny. It is also totally harmless. Though the bumblebee bat is not in the Central Plains area, it is an excellent example of the diversity of the species and why humans don’t need to be afraid of these flying friends.
At Central Plains Bat Removal, we know bats can sometimes seem a little scary. We have years of experience removing them from buildings and dwellings without harming the bats or your home. If you think you might have a bat infestation, call us right away.
The bumblebee bat is a unique species in that it is so small. It is one of the smallest animals in the world, and it is the smallest mammal living today. This little guy weighs less than two grams. As you can guess from its name, it is approximately the size of a bumblebee, measuring about 1-1.3 inches in length with about a seven-inch wingspan.
The bumblebee bat also goes by the name Kitti’s hog-nosed bat. This name comes from Kitti ThonglongyaIt, the Thai scientist credited with the bat’s discovery. Bumblebee bats are a vulnerable species and are in danger because of loss of habitat from human interference.
To distinguish a bumblebee bat from other bats, the most apparent feature you are looking for is the small size. However, you can also tell them apart by their lack of a tail and their distinct nose. These creatures have noses that might remind you of a pig or hog, upturned and somewhat swollen looking.
Bumblebee bats are gray or red-brown with lighter-colored fur underneath their bodies. They also have large ears for their size, and fur mostly covers their eyes. Their wings seem most appropriately shaped to hover.
You will find bumblebee bats in Thailand and Myanmar. They prefer roosting in limestone caves in these regions. More specifically, bumblebee bats will dwell in caves in remote forests. These bats have been found in 35 caves in Thailand, specifically in the Sai Yok National Park and eight caves throughout Myanmar. Bumblebee bats migrate seasonally between these caves.
On average, a roost will contain about 100 bats. Some colonies only have ten to fifteen bats, though scientists have found colonies of up to 500. Bumblebee bats will roost far from the entrance of their cave. When they take up residence, they choose locations high up on the walls or ceiling. They will also stay far apart from other bat species.
People don’t see bumblebee bats often since they only leave their roosts for brief periods at dusk and dawn. They have to satisfy all their hunting needs in less than an hour a day. These bats will only travel about one kilometer from their roost.
The weather is temperamental in the region, and often heavy rains or colder temperatures force the bats to remain grounded. When bumblebee bats are unable to fly to find food, they will search for food in cassava and kapok fields. They also forage in teak trees and bamboo clumps.
These bats feed solely on insects. They hunt for insects in flight using echolocation or find them on leaves. When hunting, the bats emit a high-pitched squeaking sound and listen for the echo that comes back.
A female bumblebee bat gives birth in the dry season, around April. One pup is born at a time. When the mother needs to hunt, the baby will stay in the roost or cling to the mother at one of her nipples for the flight.
While you might not find bumblebee bats around your house, there are species of bats that frequently find their way into homes throughout the region. The most important thing to remember if you see bats in your house is not to panic. Though bats seem scary, they play a vital role in our ecosystem. They help farmers by controlling insect populations, and they aid in pollination.
Bats are not flying mice as many people assume, and they are not rodents. They are a unique species called Chiroptera, meaning “hand-wing.” Bats are not blind, and they will not get tangled in your hair. They are excellent navigators and use sonar to find and avoid things. If a bat seems to be diving towards your head, they are probably doing you a favor by eating a mosquito or insect next to you.
If you have never taken the time to learn more about bats, now is the time. They aren’t dirty or ugly. Many people say their faces resemble deer or rabbits. They also spend a significant amount of time grooming their fur. For a list of interesting bat facts, check this out.
Two of the most common misconceptions are that these animals will drink your blood or give you rabies. Most likely, neither of these will happen. Only three of the 1,100 species of bats are vampires, and they do not go after humans. Bats can catch rabies, just like other mammals, but they don’t carry the disease naturally.
Bats are fascinating animals. They are gentle and intelligent. They are not scary, so you should not panic when you see one. It is wise not to touch or interact with them, but they feel the same way about you.
It is our responsibility to ensure that we have as little impact on bats as possible. It is natural to not want a bat in your home, but remember they are looking for the same things you are. They want a warm, secure place to sleep and raise their young.
At Central Plains Bat Removal, we want to remove bats carefully from a house for their safety and yours. If you have a bat infestation, give us a call for a free quote. Let us take care of your bat infestation, and you won’t have to worry about a thing.
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