Are You Batty? A Bat trivia
What would Halloween be without visions of scary little bats flapping overhead? Love them or hate them, bats are one of the most vilified creatures on the planet. Ironically, bats are also one of the world's most essential animals. They consume enormous numbers of insect pests, disperse seeds and pollinate many plants. Bat droppings are used in many useful products like antibiotics and fertilizers. However, bats are becoming endangered throughout the world because of misinformation, disease and habitat loss.
|Big Eared Townsend Bat (public domain)|
A Trivia About Bats
How much do you really know about bats, these misunderstood Halloween icons? Take this ten question trivia quiz to find out.
1. How does a vampire bat approach its sleeping prey to feed on its blood and what is its prey of choice?
2. What U. S. city has the largest urban population of bats and what kind are they?
3. To what species do bats belong and what unique characteristic do they have that no other members of this species possess?
4. How long can a healthy little brown bat live?
5. Where and when was White-nose Syndrome, a fungus that has been killing large populations of bats in the U.S., first discovered?
6. Name the largest bat on the planet and its typical wingspan measurement.
7. How many offspring does a female bat give birth to at one time? 8. How large is the tiniest bat known on the planet and where does it live?
9. Are bats blind?
10. What two characteristics make it highly improbable for a flying bat to get stuck in a human's hair?
Answers to the Trivia - How well do you know your bats
1- A vampire bat walks quietly on all four legs (the only bat that can do so) to sneak up on its sleeping prey. Its preferred prey is a sleeping farm animal like a cow or a pig. Contrary to popular belief, vampire bats do not stalk human beings.
2- Austin, Texas has the largest urban population of bats in the U. S. They are free-tailed bats from Mexico.
Interesting book about Texas bats: Bats of Texas (W. L. Moody Jr. Natural History Series)
3- Bats are the only mammals with the innate ability to fly.
4- The common little brown bat found across North America can live for over 30 years.
5- White-nose Syndrome was first discovered in upstate New York in 2006.
6- The largest bat on the planet is the Indonesian fruit bat, known as the flying fox. It can have a wingspan over 6 feet (1.83 meters) wide.
7- A female bat gives birth to only one offspring at a time.
8- The tinniest bat, hence the tinniest mammal known on the planet, is the bumblebee bat of Thailand. Weighing only about 0.07 ounces (2 grams), it is endangered due to habitat loss
9- No, bats are not blind. They can actually see better than humans at night, although they are color-blind.
10- In addition to having excellent night vision, bats have sophisticated radar called echolocation which enables them to distinguish insects and avoid obstacles as thin as a human hair.