Bats…Yes I said Bats!!! Bats can be found in and around almost every American garden. Many gardeners have these night time visitors, but, unless you are really looking to the sky into the night time dark sky’s you will never know they are present. There are 47 species of bats in North America. The UK has 18 different species of bats, there are about 30 different known species of bats in western Europe and Australia has between 75 and 90 species of bats.
**A word of caution. A bat on the ground is a sure sign of a sick bat. Never try to pick them up, they can and will bite you. Scoop them up in a box or better yet call animal control to have it removed.
Bats are some of the good guys. They can eat their own body weight in insects every night. Bats almost always catch and feed on insects while in flight. Almost never landing until they return to their roosting sites.
The primary species of bat you will see flying around your yard in the USA are brown bats. There are two kinds: the big brown bat and the little brown bat. Brown bats roost in man made structures like barns, and can also be enticed to live in bat houses. They, and their cousin, the little brown bat, feed on many different insects and can actually eat their own weight in mosquitoes in a single night. This makes them extremely beneficial to your garden.
Bat Myths debunked.
There are many myths surrounding bats because of our cultural fear of them being evil. Actually, bats are very gentle animals and are virtually harmless.
*Bats are blind. Actually, bats can see very well. They also use a technique called echolocation to make sure that their flight path is clear and to help them find food. This involves them sending out high-frequency sounds and then listening to the echoes of the sounds as they bounce off objects.
*Bats drink blood. Only three species of bat are sanguivorous, and they’re known as vampire bats. However, they prefer to bite large mammals and rarely ever bite humans. All vampire bat species are found only in Latin America.
*Bats carry rabies. Bats are much less likely to carry rabies than dogs, which account for 99 percent of rabies cases.
*Bat guano is poisonous. Although you shouldn’t breathe any dust from any animal droppings, guano is no more dangerous than cat or bird droppings.
North American Bat Profiles and maps of their habitat ranges A good reference to discover what bat species are likely to be found in your area.
Invite a Bat and a few of his friends to live in your backyard and garden. Build and erect a bat house or two. Locate them in or near your garden plot.
Milwaukee County Zoological Gardens Successful Bat Houses
A simple and easy to build bat house from This Old House
Not from the USA. Please leave me comment about your home town and country.
Why is common sense so uncommon?
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