Trivia question for Oct-19-2011

Posted on Oct 19, 2011 in Trivia

Carter and Olivia are going to be guest speakers at the Lubee Bat Conservancy for their ‘7th Annual Florida Bat Festival‘ later in Oct.  In preparation of the event the kids are doing research on various types of bats.  Check out what they came up with for todays trivia.  These are one of the few species of bat known to provide for their young by bringing food back to the roost.

These bats are carnivorous, feeding on birds, rodent and even other bats. With regards to avian prey, this species prefers to hunt birds that weigh between 20 and 150 grams, sleep in foliage rather than in holes or burrows, and either roost communally or have a strong body odor. In one bat roost, the remains of 84 birds from 18 species were found. Non-passerines seem to be significantly preferred over passerines. When hunting, these bats use scent more so than sight or echolocation to trace prey. One bat was recorded using nearby rivers as flyways to move between foraging areas on the edges of forests and tree clumps in pastures. Upon locating prey, a bat will stalk it from above before striking.

So here are Carter’s questions:  Tell us what kind of bat this is, where they can be found and if they are considered endangered or threatened?  Also, tell us what American soldiers attempted to do with these bats during WWII?

Good Luck 😉


Congratulations goes out to Tami Kannenberg from Bellingham, Washington for being the first with the correct answer and also for getting all the questions answered. Great job!. The bat we featured is the Spectral Vampier Bat. The Spectral Bat is a large, carnivorous leaf-nosed bat. Some alternate names for this species are the False Vampire Bat, Linnaeus’s False Vampire Bat and the Spectral Vampire Bat.

The spectral bat ranges from Veracruz, Mexico, southward to the island of Trinidad, central Brazil and Peru. It appears that the bat is restricted to Neotropical forest regions elevations ranging from sea level to 1,650 m. This species seems to prefer to live in lowlands and foothills, stream-sides, evergreen forests, yards and swamps.

These bats are listed as ‘Threatened’ in most of their range and are listed as ‘Endangered’ in some areas, particularly in Mexico due to destruction of habitat and use of chemical pesticides, such as DDT which builds in their systems as they feed on insects and other prey.

In WWII American soldiers attempted to train several species of bats (including these bats) to drop bombs – and endeavor that failed.  Their goal was to create the “bat bomb” which was supposed to release bats with incendiary devices into enemy cities and cause fires, resulting in the deaths of the bats. The bats used were free-tailed bats though. Here is more on these big bats: Spectral Vampier Bat

Thanks for playing along 😉