When people hear the word bat, they either think of baseball or Dracula! Bats of the animal variety, with their leathery wings and tiny sharp teeth, seem to strike fear into the hearts of most people. Maybe this is because of a common misconception that all bats drink blood like the vampire bats in the Dracula movies. Actually, there are only three species of bats in the world that feed on blood and they reside solely in South America.
The following are more interesting facts about bats:
- Bats are the only mammals capable of true flight. Their wings are actually “hands” with elongated fingers and a leathery membrane.
- 70% of the world’s 1,000+ species of bats feed on insects. The remainder feed on nectar, fruit, lizards, birds, frogs or even fish. All 13 species of bats found in Florida are insectivores (bug eaters).
- Besides being natural pest controllers, bats help to pollinate plants and spread fruit seeds (carried in their nutrient-rich guano).
- Speaking of guano, some bats can produce several times their body weight in droppings per week, depending on how much they eat. Bat guano is reported to be a great fertilizer, but like other excrement, there are hazards associated with handling the raw product.
- Most bats prefer to roost in trees or caves. Unfortunately, when these roosting sites are not available, bats can take up residence in buildings and become a nuisance.
As you can see, bats aren’t the bad guys they’re made out to be. In the event you encounter a bat problem in your home, we have humane methods to remove the bats. This will not only make you happy, but the bats will benefit, as well.