The Little Brown Bat

I caught this Little Brown Bat sleeping on the wall outside my office.  Why he chose to sleep here, under the roof of a very busy campus is known only to the bat.  He only stayed the one night day.  So I felt lucky to take his photograph.

Bats are beneficial and generally a gentle species, they can also be a nuisance if they decide to take up residence in your home or outbuildings.  But that’s another story for another time.

One Little Brown Bat can eat up to 1,000 mosquitoes in an hour.  YEA!!!! Mosquitoes are really bad this year, and with the threat of West Nile Disease in our area having Little Brown Bats swooping along eating the nasty little bugs is pretty cool.

Yes, I know bats can carry rabies, but very few bats are ever really infected with the disease — like less than 1% of all the bats in the world get the disease.

Bats also feed on mosquitoes, Gypsy moths, Japanese beetles and other nasty damaging pests.

Bats also pollinate plants such as the Organ Pipe and Saquaro (I hope I spelled that right) cactus in the western states and like birds disperse seeds in the rainforests, encouraging new growth.

Some fun little facts about bats are:

  • Bats are clean and like to groom themselves
  • More than 1,000 species of bats are known
  • Most bats give birth to one ‘pup’ each year
  • Bats live around 20-30 years
  • And my little friend up there on the wall—Little Brown Bats have a life expectancy of up to 40 years

Pretty Cool, don’t you think!?!

If you would like to learn more about bats contact the Bat Conservation Internation group  here you will learn how to attract bats by building your very own bat house (or two) or maybe buy one to place near your gardens.

Wisconsin and Minnesota are setting the example by working to encourage people to understand bats.  Wisconsin DNR offers free bat house design and instruction  Minnesota DNR also has plans and instructions available

Have fun watching these friends of our enviroment.  They really are cool little creatures!


22 thoughts on “The Little Brown Bat

  1. Hi Linda

    I’m afraid I can’t share your enthusiasm for bats. They are members of the Flying Fox family.
    Flying foxes are causing real damage here in Australia – they carry a disease which has been called
    the “Hendra virus” – this disease resulted in the deaths of many horses in Qld, plus the deaths of
    some vets, horse trainers, stable-hands and horse owners. The agriculture department has come up with
    an anti-serum (?) to combat the spread of the disease. Some years ago the whole horse racing industry in
    Qld was closed down – no animals were able to cross state borders and areas were declared
    prohibited zones. If you were living in those areas, you were not allowed out until the area was decontaminated.
    The whole state was in turmoil! Virtual lockdown!!
    I realise that the bat shown on this report is far smaller than the flying fox, but, our version causes
    havoc with fruit growers and where the flying foxes congregate in their “home colony”, the stench is horrific.
    I am sure far worse than your smelly skunks.
    To make matters more bizarre – flying foxes are a protected species?????? Try telling that to an orchardist, a
    horse trainer, a pony club kid, a stud owner etc. – you would want to have fast feet or transport to get away!!
    Colin (HB)


  2. why do we dislike bats so much??/
    when I was little we thought (actually our Mom probably told us) they would get tangled in our hair…so if we were outside at night and saw one we would run around screaming and covering our heads (o:
    We have one that lives in our back porch area…never see it…but see its droppings…and we still have plenty of mosquitos (o:


  3. Thank you for promoting bats. I do love an appreciate these little mammals too. I wish I got to see them more. I know they are here in the summer but are invisible to my eyes at night. Or are few and far between in our area.


  4. Bats used to nest in the community theatre building where i was in many productions. I am a big fan and managed to save their lives from ignorant humans who wanted to do them harm.


  5. Hi Linda, We have black bats here. One decided to sleep on the top of my porch one day… Somewhere I have a picture of him… They are protected here –and you are not supposed to kill them… I like the idea that they eat mosquitos!!!

    Thanks for sharing your brown bat.


  6. Linda, thanks for showing the positive side of bats. I think they get a bad rap. They’re good creatures to have around! Almost cute too!
    I keep falling behind in my blogging, but just read your last three. Enjoyed them a lot and LOVE the (awful) fire sunset photo. Beautiful – but sad at the same time.
    And I did NOT KNOW that corn made a sound when it grew that you could actually hear!!! Wow! That is so interesting.
    Glad you can email now and are enjoying your summer! 🙂


  7. Thanks for the nice clear shot of your friend. Too bad bats have such a bad reputation. There are probably many more people bitten by dogs with rabies that bats. And most people don’t run in terror from every dog they see. I love to watch the bats at work in the early evening. They are amazing in their flight.


  8. Our local bats are different. They are sometimes called flying foxes. they are a fruit bat, eating fruit an nectar but they are a nuisance to have around the house. They make the most messy droppings which leaves brown liquid stains on balconies, walls, roofs and the washing. They screech at night and demolish fruit trees and flowering trees in the garden. They also carry a fatal disease for horses and humans its not rabies but I can’t remember what it is called. I know they are an important part of the ecosystem but I don’t like them.


  9. Lucky you, getting that picture!

    Our bats here in New England have had a rough couple of years – a fungus called ‘White-Nose Disease’ has decimated colonies throughoout the region. I was quite pleased to see 4 of them flitting through the yard at dusk last week.

    Keep eatin’ those ‘skeeters, bats!


  10. I like bats too and have a bat house up on my old TV entennae! They are good at keeping the mosquitoes down. We had them living in the wall of our house the first year we moved here and didn’t even know it for most of the summer. They sleep all day and are very quiet.


  11. Awwwww….I love bats. While others think they look like the image of Satan, I think they are adorable and I like to call them little flying wolves. Their faces are irresistable. I was in Carlsbad Cave once in New Mexico. The neatest thing is to sit at the front of the BIT cave opening and watch the bats fly out at dusk. Quite a miracle of nature.


  12. We’ve got the same ones here….I don’t like it when they fall off the shop door in front of me but other than that they do much more good than harm. We see quite a few flying around in the late evening catching bugs I’d imagine.


  13. I remember waking up one night as a child from a bat that came in my room. It was very scary at first because it moved so fast. So I chased it out of the window. The next day I found it dead outside and felt very sorry for it, but it gave me the chance to see what a pretty furry little thing it was and I looked at bats with other eyes after that. Of course reading Colin’s story from Australia gives it another dimension again. But they still are pretty…


  14. Saturday at Bear Creek, CO, a Magpie had a brown bat in it’s mouth. The bat bit the bird and the bird dropped the bat in the lake, by the shore. The bat was drowning. I had a big cup with beer that I dumped out, stepped out in the late and scooped the pore lil guy out. Unharmed, he crawled up the bank. Later some people and I checked back on him and he was resting, upside down under the mud drift. It was a stressful but lucky day for one little bat. The end 🙂


  15. How did I miss this post!? You lucky woman to have seen your little bat friend. I LOVE bats. My friends all think I have a screw loose. Like you, I know their importance in the ecosystem. Goodness the mosquitoes we’d have without them!

    Liked by 1 person

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