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Online sales of a wild bat sold as décor threaten species

A fiery orange bat, its wings folded and tiny teeth forever bared on its fuzzy face, is mounted inside a 6-inch, black coffin. Its retail price: $59. Or, for $140, you can get one framed with its black and orange wings spread, ...

Energy-saving technique used by world's largest bats revealed

Researchers from Western Sydney University have led a pioneering new study, finding that flying-foxes, the largest of the bats, use torpor in the wild—a vital energy-saving state previously observed only among much smaller ...

Researchers listen to the hearts of bats in flight

Researchers from Konstanz have measured the heart rate of bats over several days in the wild, including complete flights—the first time this has been done for a bat species. To record the heart rate of male common noctule ...

Unwrapping the origin story of the baobab

The baobab (Adansonia) is a genus of trees with eight currently extant species and a long history of humans marveling at them. For as much admiration as the baobabs get, there is an equal amount of mystery surrounding their ...

Tiger beetles fight off bat attacks with ultrasonic mimicry

Bats, as the main predator of night-flying insects, create a selective pressure that has led many of their prey to evolve an early warning system of sorts: ears uniquely tuned to high-frequency bat echolocation. To date, ...

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Bats are mammals in the order Chiroptera (pronounced /kaɪˈrɒptərə/). The forelimbs of bats are developed as wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of flight (opposed to other mammals, such as flying squirrels, gliding possums and colugos, that glide only for a distance). Bats do not flap arms like birds, instead they flap spread out hands where their fingers are very long and covered with a thin membrane or patagium. Chiroptera comes from two Greek words cheir (χειρ) "hand" and pteron (πτερον) "wing."

There is an estimated total of about 1,100 species worldwide, which is about 20 percent of all classified mammal species. About 70 percent of bats are insectivores. Most of the rest are frugivores, with a few species being carnivorous. Bats are present throughout most of the world and perform a vital ecological role by pollinating flowers, and eat various plants to dispere their seeds. Many tropical plants depend for their seeds to be distributed entirely by bats.

Bats range in size from Kitti's Hog-nosed Bat measuring 29–33 mm (1.14–1.30 in) in length and 2 g (0.07 oz) in mass, to the Giant golden-crowned flying fox which has a wing span of 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in) and weighs approximately 1.2 kg (3 lb).

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA