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Bat Night

🎶 "I" said the little leatherwing bat
I'll tell to you the reason that
The reason that I fly by night
Is because I've lost my heart's delight.
Howdy dowdy diddle-dum day
Hey le lee-lee lie-lee low"

~ Traditional

This is the end of bat maternity season and time for baby bats to begin to fly during the hot summer nights. Mammals of the order Chiroptera, with their forelimbs adapted as wings, bats are the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight! Contrary to popular belief, bats are not blind and sometimes prefer using eyesight to sound (echolocation) when hunting. Many fruit bats, which drink nectar rather than hunt insects, don't echolocate at all. These species have particularly sharp vision, and some can even see ultraviolet light! Of the 1300 species of bats, many help control insect populations. According to National Geographic, bats can eat up to a thousand insects in an evening! When bats ‘home in’ on an insect they use both their vision (which in bigger bats is 3 times better than a human) and echolocation. To do this, they make a series of very fast high-pitched calls, described as a ‘feeding buzz’. 🦇

International Bat Night serves to raise awareness of these flying rodents and the role they play in nature.

While others can glide, bats are the only mammals capable of continued flight.

Bats have many places in literature and history, and serve roles both dark and hilarious.  But bats play an important role in our eco-system, and some of them are becoming endangered. International Bat Night serves to raise awareness from our flying rodent friends and why they deserve to be protected.

There are 1,100 species of bats worldwide, making up a quarter of the world’s mammals. There are 40 species of bats in the United States alone!  

Most bats are insectivores or even feed on fruit or fish.  There only three species of "vampire" bats which feed exclusively on blood.  In one hour, an insect-eating bat can consume up to 1,000 mosquitoes.  Bats can find their food in total darkness. They locate insects by emitting inaudible high-pitched sounds, 10-20 beeps per second and listening to echoes.

By designer Carol A.L. Martin, this tartan is "named after one of the most common bats in North America. They eat their share of mosquitoes and midges, etc. and are, therefore, very beneficial. I have always been fascinated by these creatures. In addition, I have always liked brown and black combinations. Here the grey represents the underneath of the bats' wings, and dark blue, the night sky."

For more fascinating facts about bats, click the picture of a little brown bat by artist Roxanne Gasperetti.

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