The second-largest order of mammals after rodents, bats comprise about 20% of all classified mammal species worldwide, with over 1,400 species. Within the family of mammals, bats are unique in their ability to undergo rapid changes in body temperature. As a result, bats can generate extra heat as needed and shed excess heat as they cool down. For example, it is theorized that tropical fruit bats may use their brown fat deposits to regulate their body temperature to maximize the odds of finding food while flying at night.
Fascinating Facts About Bats
Bats can be scary creatures, but there are some interesting facts that you may not know about bats.
- Lifespan: Bats can live for more than 30 years in the wild, but they can live as long as 60 years in captivity.
- Weird Habits: Some bats are monogamous and will share their home with one partner for the rest of their lives. However, most bat species are not monogamous, which can be a significant problem for conservation efforts.
- Speed: Megabats can fly up to around 80 kilometers per hour. These bats are found in South East Asia and Australia, and they are the only flying mammals that can out-fly birds.
- Group Homes: A group of bats is called a colony, loft, or a congress, depending on their size. A group of bats living together is called a maternity colony because it is where females give birth and raise their young.