How many species of bats are there in North America? Where do they live? What do they eat? These are all good questions, and we will go through each one of them to see just exactly how many different bats are in North America.
The first species of bats common in North America are little brown bats. When it comes to little brown bast, they are mostly found in the northern United States and Canada. Even with the little brown bat being a common bat of North America, the numbers of the little brown bat are much less in the southern states and the great plains. Little brown bats love to live in high elevations, such as the forests in Mexico. When it comes to little brown bats, they are not territorial whatsoever. They live in colonies that can reach as many as hundreds to thousands of bats in one colony. That’s a lot! When it comes to the little brown bat of North America, they like to roost when it comes time to settle down for the day and get some rest. When they roost, they will roost with the rest of the colony to stay close and warm. When it does come to the little brown bats and their colony, they have to watch out because having such a large colony has many predators that are always after them. Their predators include wild mammals, birds, snakes, and yes, even your loving house cat will bring one back to you.
Big Brown Bats
Another bat species is the big brown bat of North America. The big brown bat is the most common bat in North America. You will find them everywhere, from the deserts to the forests and mountains. They can be seen from Mexico to the central and southern states and over to the Caribbean. There are no concerns that their numbers might be dropping when it comes to big brown bats. Also, when it comes to the big brown bats of North America, they would rather be feeding on beetles than any other insects. When in flight, they will feed on moths, flies, wasps, and many other flying insects, but they would rather have their beetles. When it comes to roosting, they will roost where other predators can not get to them. Most of the time, predators will take a pup if it fell to the ground. Predators will hang around the roost in hopes that a pup will fall.
Another cool bat species is the pallid bat of North America. When it comes to these guys, they like to hang around the western part of America. They love to go up and down the coastline of Mexico and Canada. There have been sightings of the bats in northern Oklahoma and southern Kansas. When it comes to the status of these amazing pallid bats of North America, their low numbers are not alarming yet, but they are being watched. With humans disturbing them and also the pesticide use is what is causing the increasing concern. The pallid bat of North America loves to feed on just about anything. They will eat things from crickets to centipedes, beetles, and many other insects and bugs. They have even been able to take down a lizard which is rather cool for a bat! When it comes to these amazing pallid bats of North America, they will sit on the ground and catch their food, and once they have it, they will take off and find a safe location to eat and consume its food. Since they catch their food on the ground, it makes them much more vulnerable to cats, foxes, coyotes, and other hungry prey.
Brazillian Free-Tailed Bat
Another amazing species of bats common in North America is the Brazilian free-tailed bat. The Brazilian free-tailed bat is a medium-sized bat, and it has big ears and large feet. These bats are more of a black to red color. When it comes to this type of bat, most of the time, they will roost very close together, and it is in a dry place such as a roof underhang, an attic, or narrow spaces between signs and buildings. Most of the Brazilian free-tailed bats are located in Texas during the warmer months. When it comes to the cooler months, they will then head to Mexico, Central America, and even possibly as far as South America to stay warm for the winter months. They love to feed on moths, beetles, flying ants, and June bugs. They eat anywhere from 6,000 metric tons of insects annually in Texas. They are one of the longest-living bats in North America. The Brazilian free-tailed bat can live up to 11 years old in the wild. Other than the human population being one reason the Brazilian free-tailed bat of North America is losing their habitat, it is also due to non-suitable caves, mines, bridges, etc. With pesticides used on fields and farmland, the bats are starting to lose their way of living. They are on the decline rather quickly; they went from 25 million Brazilian free-tailed bats in 1963, and in just six years, they went down to 30,000, which is a very alarming decline for that much of a loss. These bats do carry rabies. Even though the numbers are low on humans getting rabies, you still need to approach with caution when it comes to these bats. You may not even know that you get bit by one of these Brazilian free-tailed bats with their teeth being so small you won’t feel them biting you.
Northern Long-Eared Bat
Last but never least, the species of bats common in North America is called the Northern long-eared bat. When it comes to the Northern long-eared bat, it is on the endangered species list due to white-nose syndrome. It is one of the most common reasons for extinction for these Northern long-eared bats. When it comes to the size of these guys, they are rather small; they are no bigger than four inches in length with a wingspan of up to 10 inches. When it comes to the Northern long-eared bat, it spends its winter hibernating in caves and mines. Most of the time, you can only see their nose and ears. When it comes to the Northern long-eared bats of North America, one really interesting thing is that the males will warm the females and copulate with them. The female will then store the sperm until spring and then ovulate, and the stored sperm will then fertilize the egg. This is called delayed fertilization which is really cool. These bats love to feed on moths, flies, leafhoppers, caddisflies, and beetles. The Northern long-eared bat is from much of the United States (found in 37 states) and Canada.
So the next time you see a bat in your yard or your home, you might not know what type of bat it is and if it is endangered or not. The best thing to do is call the bat removal professionals and let them handle the bats for you so that they can be taken safely and let go without being harmed in any way whatsoever.