Monday, August 14, 2017

Tent-making Bat

On 2 July 2017 alongside the Frog Ponds at the Villa Lapas eco-lodge in western Costa Rica, we found a Tent-making Bat hanging in a garden bush, These bats make their own abodes. The bats chew the ribs and veins of plants until the leaves fold over, creating a tent. On the plus side, this behavior means that the bats do not have to search for shelter in caves (which can be uncommon in the jungle) or other cavities in trees or in buildings. The disadvantage is that the leaves wither and die, and the bats have to make new tents every couple of weeks. One consequence is that Tent-making Bats tend to be more nomadic than more typical bats. (Wikipedia).

Look in the bat’s ears. The shiny, brown structure in each ear is not an eye, but a tragus. The tragus is a fleshy structure that aids bats in echolocation. The tragus collects sound from behind the bat. The result is that a bat has enhanced perception of its surroundings. The black eyes are further down the head nearer to the bat’s nose.

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