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What Bats Can Teach Us About Being Human

Updated on April 9, 2017
FlourishAnyway profile image

With a Ph.D. in psychology and a passion for animals, FlourishAnyway knows animals can teach us more about living healthy, fulfilling lives.

I "Vant" to Teach You Lessons, Ah ... Ah ... Ah ...

Neither classically beautiful nor cuddly, bats are nevertheless a cornerstone to a healthy ecosystem.  They control insects, pollinate plants, and disperse seeds.  What's not to love?
Neither classically beautiful nor cuddly, bats are nevertheless a cornerstone to a healthy ecosystem. They control insects, pollinate plants, and disperse seeds. What's not to love? | Source

Caped Crusaders: Bats Are Environmental Good Guys

We all have that relative—however distant—who manages to sully the family's good name through their mischief and misdeeds. For the world's 1,200 or so species of bats, it's their vampires bat cousins, spread throughout Latin and South America.1

While only three bat species actually feed on blood, their habits have spawned centuries of myths and misinformation.2 As a result, people fail to comprehend that bats are actually the good guys.

Heroes that they are, bats are wise and willing to share with us humans three important life lessons. In return, they hope we won't continue to hold the entire bat family responsible for a few rogue members. (Can you identify?)

Bats: To Know Them Is to Love Them

Stokes Beginner's Guide to Bats
Stokes Beginner's Guide to Bats

This beginner's guide contains stunning photos and information about each bat species' migration patterns, roosting and food preferences, and more!

 

Let's Hang Out

Is this a Skeeter Eater Convention?  One bat can consume up to 1,200 mosquitoes an hour!
Is this a Skeeter Eater Convention? One bat can consume up to 1,200 mosquitoes an hour! | Source

Lesson 1: Help Others, Help Yourself

Without bats to help us, perhaps the following would be true:

  • West Nile Virus would run rampant
  • There would be less rum and tequila to wash away our troubles, and
  • We'd be forced to use more toxic pesticides on crops.

So what helpful roles do bats play in all these things?

Dude, Lights Out

Bats are nocturnal.  Their night-time hunting reduces competition for food with birds.
Bats are nocturnal. Their night-time hunting reduces competition for food with birds. | Source

Bats: Signs You May Have Company in Your Attic

Do you have cracks around windows, pipes, or electrical wiring that are 1/3 inch (8.5 mm) or more wide? Bats can squeeze through openings as small as that.

Signs you may have a bat roost in your attic include:

  • ammonia odors from accumulated bat waste
  • fecal droppings beneath bats' entry points in the building
  • dark brown, oily discoloration near their entry site (vents, trim boards, the roof and chimneys)
  • a constant scraping or scratching sound, most noticeable at night.

Eviction typically requires professional help. It is illegal to kill bats under federal law. Plus, you wouldn't want to harm the good guy, would you?

Bats Are Silent Superheroes of the Ecosystem

Bats are stealthy superheroes of the ecosystem.

One of the most plentiful species of mammals in North America, bats represent about 20% of all classified mammal species in the world.3 Often, however, we don't realize bats are around to help us because they are nocturnal.

Bats provide these three key benefits to our ecosystem and economy:

1. insect consumption - Bats provide a "green" alternative to using toxic pesticides. Mosquitoes spread the West Nile Virus, while other pests can inflict billions of dollars in damage to agricultural crops.

But the Bat Brigade comes to our rescue. One bat can eat up to 1,200 mosquitoes in one hour.4 A pregnant or lactating bat can consume her own weight in insects in a single night. In addition to mosquitoes, bats devour crop-damaging moths, cucumber and June beetles, stink bugs, and leafhoppers.

2. pollination of plants - It is often said that bees and birds take the day shift, whereas bats take the night shift. As many as 500 tropical plants rely on bats for pollination. For example: almonds, cocoa, cashews, dates and figs, bananas, peaches, mangoes, sugar cane (used to make rum), and agave (used to produce tequila).5

3. seed dispersal - Bats that consume seeds excrete them long distances from where they ate their meal. In this way, bats play an important role in reforesting areas that have been cleared or fragmented.6

So what can humans learn from bats' helpfulness?

Fruit Bat's Notion of Nirvana

You're not the only one who likes bananas!  Nearly one-third of the world's bats feed on fruit or plant nectar.  Bats play a critical role in regenerating rainforests through seed dispersal.
You're not the only one who likes bananas! Nearly one-third of the world's bats feed on fruit or plant nectar. Bats play a critical role in regenerating rainforests through seed dispersal. | Source

Benefits of Lending a Helping Human Hand

Helping others and helping yourself are not mutually exclusive activities. Bats do both in order to survive, and so can you!

Research has found that helping and volunteering are associated with:

  • increases in self-confidence7
  • an enhanced immune system
  • decreases in the intensity and awareness of physical pain
  • lower stress levels, as cortisol, the "stress hormone" decreases and oxytocin, the "compassion hormone" is released8
  • increased mood ("the helper's high"), with protection against mild to moderate depression and
  • longer life expectancy, particularly with a decreased risk for heart disease.

When it comes to volunteering, do it because you are motivated by compassion for good. While you may not get paid money for your efforts, your rewards may be just as sweet. Some might call it karma!

Know Your Bat Facts

Know your bat facts.  Bats are not blind.  They are not filthy, not rodents, they are shy and intelligent, and they don't hunt down people.
Know your bat facts. Bats are not blind. They are not filthy, not rodents, they are shy and intelligent, and they don't hunt down people. | Source

Bat Myths Debunked

MYTH
FACT
MYTH: Bats are blind.
FACT: Most bats have vision that rivals a human's. Some bats, such as the fruit bat, can see remarkably well in low lighting, and they even see in color.
MYTH: Bats are filthy creatures.
FACT: Bats spend significant time grooming their hair to maintain its silky texture.
MYTH: Bats are flying mice.
FACT: Bats are not rodents. They are more related to primates than to mice.
MYTH: Vampire bats prey off human blood.
FACT: Only three out of more than 1,200 species of bats feed off blood -- spoonful-sized meals which they lap rather than suck, primarily from cattle or birds. Bats don't hunt down people.
MYTH: Bats visciously attack humans.
FACT: Bats are shy and intelligent. Like other wild animals, they want to be left alone but may bite in self-defense. Leave them alone.
MYTH: Bats try to "swoop" down on people and get tangled in their hair.
FACT: If a bat is swooping down near you, it's probably trying to catch a nearby mosquito.
My brother in 1976 as the Caped Crusader, ready to conquer the dark forces of evil.
My brother in 1976 as the Caped Crusader, ready to conquer the dark forces of evil. | Source

Lesson 2: Collaborate for Success

Bats know the value of collaboration. They reside in groups, raise their pups in groups and hunt together, too. Bats are social animals and most often live together in colonies. These colonies typically range from just a few bats to thousands.

Bats rely on groups so much that the lone bat is most likely lost or confused. Their preferred dwellings are typically hot, dry, dark locations, such as in man-made structures. However, depending on the species, bats may also live in old dead trees, caves, dead palm fronds, or Spanish moss.9

We Are Family (All My Bat Buddies and Me)

Baby bats often cluster together like a bunch of grapes to stay warm.  Bats live, raise their young, and hunt in groups.  They prefer  spaces that are hot, dry, and dark. Attic vacancy?
Baby bats often cluster together like a bunch of grapes to stay warm. Bats live, raise their young, and hunt in groups. They prefer spaces that are hot, dry, and dark. Attic vacancy? | Source

The largest known colony of bats in the world is north of San Antonio, Texas, at Bracken Cave. It houses over 20 million bats. Bats have inhabited the cave for an estimated 10,000 years, and the area has become an ecotourist site.

Bats find it most effective to hunt in groups. At dusk, they exit their roosts and fan out over the landscape in search of insects. Amazingly, some swarms of bats are so massive that they are detectible on Doppler radar.11

Dinner Time

Millions of bats span out at dusk in search of insects, traveling as far as 500 miles (800 km) for their food.  They are so powerful in masse that they can show up on radar.
Millions of bats span out at dusk in search of insects, traveling as far as 500 miles (800 km) for their food. They are so powerful in masse that they can show up on radar. | Source

During a single night, bats can

  • achieve speeds of up to 60 miles per hour (97 km/h)
  • cover as far as 500 miles (800 km) and
  • reach elevations as high as 10,000 feet (3 km) — all in their search for food.

Although this bat is hanging out alone, typically bats cluster in groups.
Although this bat is hanging out alone, typically bats cluster in groups. | Source

Bats also benefit from raising their young in communal roosts. Female bats congregate in colonies called "maternity roosts."

Females of a roost typically give birth to their babies at the same general time. Each mother has an "only child," and the pups huddle together for warmth in crèches while the mothers are out foraging for food together.

Scared of bats?  This is one case when it pays to read the signs.
Scared of bats? This is one case when it pays to read the signs. | Source

Facts About Bats

  • The image of the Mexican free-tailed bat is the logo for Bacardi rum. According to Cuban and Spanish folklore, bats are symbols of good health, family unity, and good fortune.
  • Depending on the species, bats live 5-30 years—a long time for an animal of their size.
  • Vampire bats have strong family bonds. If something happens to a mother vampire bat, another female will often "adopt" the orphan -- the only type of bats known to do this.
  • Vampire bats also share meals of blood among other members through regurgitation, as they can only live two days without such a meal.
  • Less than 0.5% of bats have rabies. The threat of rabies is virtually zero if you do the following:
  • vaccinate all family cats and dogs
  • avoid contact with unfamiliar animals
  • never touch wild animals; if it will allow you to touch it, it is likely sick.12

Know When to Use Groups

For humans, groups are not always the best way to accomplish a task, however. Any employee who's been assigned to a work team knows that.

Whereas bats excel at collaboration, human groups often fail to reach their full potential. That's because group-based work involves:

  1. motivation losses, reductions in our levels of individual effort, as well as
  2. coordination losses, problems in efficiently combining the individual inputs of members.

We humans therefore need to know when to use groups and when to forsake them in favor of going it alone.

Deciding When a Group Should Perform the Work

When you are ready to assign work to either a group or a competent individual, stop and consider the things that make group-based work more effective:

  • the task is sufficiently complex that it can be broken down into sub-tasks and assigned to various members
  • the group is highly motivated to find the best solution (e.g., high risk situations involving consequences of grades, jobs, or possible loss of life).
  • success on the task is determined by production volume as opposed to quality (i.e., every contribution helps, no matter how small). An example is scoring the most goals.

Next time you're faced with a collaboration conundrum remember these tips! Bats exploit the power of collaboration, and you can too—when circumstances are right.

"Ve Vill Have Cuddle Time, Yes?"

Most bats mate, give birth, and sleep in an upside down position.  If a bat dies while it is roosting, it will remain upside down until something knocks it loose.
Most bats mate, give birth, and sleep in an upside down position. If a bat dies while it is roosting, it will remain upside down until something knocks it loose. | Source

Lesson 3: Know Where You Are: The Value of Feedback

Even though they are most active under the cover of night, bats have an enviable ability to know where they are because of echolocation.

Through their mouths or noses, bats emit ultrasonic screeches that bounce off potential bug meals. Feedback from these sounds help bats navigate through the night air. Their echolocation is so well developed that it can detect objects as thin as a human hair.

Educate yourself about the benefits of bats so you can overcome your prejudice and fear about them.  This little guy is cute, isn't he?
Educate yourself about the benefits of bats so you can overcome your prejudice and fear about them. This little guy is cute, isn't he? | Source

Know Your Bat Facts Quiz

Which one of the following true statements about bats surprised you the MOST?

See results
This bat hopes you can use the life lessons he and his friends have shared.
This bat hopes you can use the life lessons he and his friends have shared. | Source

So how do bats zap their insect prey that flit about so unpredictably? Using their super sonar abilities, bats estimate not only where the target is in relation to themselves but also where their insect targets will end up.

The winged hunters even take turns being quiet so they can listen to their bat leader. It's the equivalent of not everyone talking at the same time!9 That's certainly good advice for humans, too!

This bat is providing some negative feedback to the person who is cornering him by baring his fangs.  Back off and give the bat some room.
This bat is providing some negative feedback to the person who is cornering him by baring his fangs. Back off and give the bat some room. | Source

Seek Out Feedback

Think of bats' echolocation as a feedback seeking process. Bats emit sounds that in turn generate feedback from the environment, letting them know where they are relative to their food goals, insects.

Harnessing the power of feedback has benefits for humans in our goal-striving. In work settings, employees who are young, new in their job, or new with the company tend to seek the most feedback, or information about the correctness and adequacy of their behaviors.

However, feedback is an effective strategy for attaining goals. More of us should use it regularly in both personal and professional areas of our lives.

Research shows that seeking feedback

  • reduces uncertainty
  • improves skills and performance, and
  • is related to more positive job attitudes, including job satisfaction, lower intention to leave the organization, and lower actual turnover.

Although you may be reluctant to seek out negative feedback, it can enhance perceptions about you and produce more accurate understandings of how other people view your work. What's not to love about that?

Get your Bat Girl costume on and spread the word that bats are bats are the good guys.
Get your Bat Girl costume on and spread the word that bats are bats are the good guys. | Source

The World's Largest Known Bat Colony

A markerBracken Cave, TX -
Bracken Bat Cave, Texas 78266, USA
get directions

Bracken Cave is located north of San Antonio, TX. It is home to the world's largest known bat colony, estimated at 20 million members strong.

Millions of Bats: The World's Largest Known Bat Colony

Summary

  • Bats consume insects and disperse and pollinate seeds. This provides residual benefits to us humans. Follow bats' helpful example by volunteering and helping others. In so doing, you may help yourself with psychological and physical health benefits as well as longer life span.
  • Bats know the value of groups. They live, raise their young, and hunt in groups. You can harness the benefits of group-based work by knowing when to use groups and when to go it alone.
  • Bats have built in sonar systems. Through echolocation, they seek information from the environment to achieve their goals. They also take turns "shushing" while others speak. Feedback seeking is an effective human goal seeking strategy.

Notes

1Bat Conservation International. "All About Bats - Intro." Last modified April 1, 2011. http://batcon.org/index.php/all-about-bats/intro-to-bats.html.

2Wikipedia. "Vampire bat." Last modified October 26, 2013. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vampire_bat.

3Bat Rescue. "Bat Facts." Links. Accessed October 29, 2013. http://www.batrescue.org/batfacts/batfacts.html.

4BestNest.com. "Benefits of Bats." Last modified 2013. http://www.bestnest.com/bestnest/lc/lc_bat_benefits.asp.

5University of California Agriculture & Natural Resources. "Bats Management Guidelines." Home Page - UC Statewide IPM Program. Last modified October, 2009. http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn74150.html.

6Bat Conservation International. "All About Bats - Intro." Last modified April 1, 2011. http://www.batcon.org/index.php/all-about-bats/intro-to-bats.html.

7UnitedHealthcare. "Discover the healthy benefits of helping others." Do Good Live Well - Home. Last modified 2013. http://www.uhc.com/health-and-wellness/family-health/healthy-benefits-of-helping-others.

8Barnett, Robert A. "19 Healthy Reasons To Help Others." The Huffington Post. Last modified July 28, 2011. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/28/health-benefits-of-volunteering-helping-others_n_909713.html#s316118title=Helpers_Live_Longer.

9Florida Bat Conservancy. "Florida Bat Habitat and Roosting Preferences." Florida Bat Conservancy Home Page. Last modified 2006. http://www.floridabats.org/Habitat.htm.

10http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-blogs/weathermatrix/20000000-bats-on-radar/19714

11Wikipedia. "Bat." Last modified October 29, 2013. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bats.

Nightly Do-Gooders: The Bat Brigade

Nocturnal superheroes, bats comprise about 20% of the world's classified mammal species.
Nocturnal superheroes, bats comprise about 20% of the world's classified mammal species. | Source

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    • Joyette  Fabien profile image

      Joyette Fabien 6 months ago from Dominica

      Good to know you understand :)

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 6 months ago from USA

      Joyette - Ewwwww. You certainly are living a little closer to nature than I would want to! My heart goes out to you!

    • Joyette  Fabien profile image

      Joyette Fabien 6 months ago from Dominica

      Well I did not enjoy this one as I did the one on donkeys. No fault of yours. The article was just as interesting and well written. Voted UP!!! However, they say "he who is in the kitchen feels the heat". I have bats in my ceiling so I "feel" the droppings and the noise. I also have fruit bats which come to roost on my roof leaving a greasy mess all down the front and sides of the house as well as fruit shells, seeds and juice stains all over the steps and yard :( . I hate bats!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 13 months ago from USA

      Snakesmum - My sentiments exactly. Once you learn a little bit about them, it's so much harder to vilify. Have a great week ahead!

    • Snakesmum profile image

      Jean DAndrea 13 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      Whenever I'm outside at night, I'm looking for bats. They quite often fly over my suburb, and have been known to feed on my fruit trees. They're welcome as long as I get my share! :-) Bats are cute.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      grand old lady - Not everyone's a looker! At least they work hard! We sure do judge them harshly, the poor critters. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 2 years ago from Philippines

      Anything that eats 1,200 mosquitoes is a good friend of mine. But seriously, bats are ugly. No wonder they are more associated with vampires than Batman. Never judge a book by its cover seems to be the lesson from this article.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      VioletteRose - I appreciate your stopping by! Have a great week.

    • VioletteRose profile image

      VioletteRose 2 years ago from Chicago

      Bats are interesting, thanks for sharing so much details :)

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      Pico - It is sad. Thank you for stopping by.

    • Pico Triano profile image

      John 2 years ago from New Brunswick, Canada

      Lots of great information here. It's sad that there is such a huge die off of bats in my part of the world.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      Rajan - They are mysterious and helpful creatures. I've always wanted to go see huge bat colonies like they have in Texas. I think it would be awe-inspiring to see the mass exodus at dusk. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 2 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      I'll see bats in a different light now on. Thanks for dispelling so many myths and surely we have a lot to learn from these creatures.

      Thank you.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Carrie - They may not be cute, but they sure are helpful! Glad you learned something, and thanks for reading!

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L. Cronkite 3 years ago from Maine

      Wow, I have a different perspective on bats after reading this. Thank you for this informative article.

    • spiritwood profile image

      spiritwood 3 years ago from Wales, UK

      yes we rescue them here if need be. i have a big interest in bats & often watch then with my daughter,

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      spiritwood - Thanks for stoping by. Bats are helpful, fascinating creatures.

    • spiritwood profile image

      spiritwood 3 years ago from Wales, UK

      great to see this- i love bats & have a family of pips in my attic. :)

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      vespawoolf - Thanks for stopping by. I bet you made their day saying that bats are cute. They kinda are in a way.

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 3 years ago from Peru, South America

      What a nice article about the benefits of bats! They´re actually kind of cute, too, in my opinion. It´s good that they´re protected under law...they really can teach us a lot about working in groups even though working in groups isn´t the only way to work. Very interesting and well-written. thanks!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Eddy - Thanks for stopping by. Have a great holiday yourself!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      Wonderful, interesting and thoroughly enjoyed .Voting up and wishing you a great day.

      Eddy.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      ologsinquito - They spook me a little, too, but I don't know why because I've never been close to one. I respect their abilities enormously, just don't want them living in my attic. Thanks for reading, commenting, and voting.

    • ologsinquito profile image

      ologsinquito 3 years ago from USA

      This was truly fascinating with so many interesting facts about bats. Despite the fact they still spook me, I know view them in a new light. They do help keep the mosquito population under control. Voted up, of course.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Vinaya - That's funny! So do I. I bet it looks the same, only different. Have a great day!

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal

      Another wonderful article on the series. I want to hang upside down and see how the world looks from opposite direction.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      agusfanani - Thanks for reading and commenting. Glad you appreciate the benefits of bats.

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 3 years ago from Indonesia

      An intelligent description about bats . I agree with the facts revealed in your hub that bats give benefits to environment that we all should learn from them. Vote up this a useful, awesome, interesting hub.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      JPso138 - Thanks for visiting and I am glad you enjoyed reading this.

    • JPSO138 profile image

      JPSO138 3 years ago from Cebu, Philippines, International

      Very catching and informative. I love this hub.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Peter, Thanks for the visit.

    • Peter Dickinson profile image

      Peter Dickinson 3 years ago from South East Asia

      Thank you...interesting.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Rebecca - Thanks for reading and commenting. My brother knows he's an Internet Batman, bless his heart, and his kids get a real kick out of it.

    • Rebecca Furtado profile image

      Rebecca Furtado 3 years ago from Anderson, Indiana

      Oh this hub could drive one batty. So now having bats in your belfry is a good thing. Very good hub, one question .. Does your bother know you have that picture? Bats off to you on a great hub.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      rohanfelix - I am so happy you learned something, as I did as well in researching this. Thanks for reading and have an awesome day!.

    • rohanfelix profile image

      Rohan Rinaldo Felix 3 years ago from Chennai, India

      A fascinating and well researched article. Voted up. I never knew before that bats were closer related to primates than to rodents. This hub makes me look at bats in a whole new light.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      starbright - I appreciate the compliment and hope it helps bats shake off their bad reputation.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Toytasting - I agree that bats are marvelous creatures. Thank you for the kudos and for the visit.

    • Toytasting profile image

      Toy Tasting 3 years ago from Mumbai

      It is amazing that Bats teach us so much. More than that, the way you have depicted it is lovely. Thanks for providing valuable insights and yes the pictures are wonderful. :)

    • starbright profile image

      Lucy Jones 3 years ago from Scandinavia

      Wonderful hub and very, very interesting in all aspects.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Suzanne - Thanks for reading and following. Animals can teach us so much, and we are more alike than we are different from them.

    • Suzanne Day profile image

      Suzanne Day 3 years ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

      I really like the concept of analysing behaviour and what we can learn from nature. Interesting read!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      epbooks - I think I'm like you. I appreciate them at a distance, just don't move in or get too close. Other than that I have tremendous respect for them. Thanks for reading and commenting

    • epbooks profile image

      Elizabeth Parker 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I had to laugh at the last myth, as we have tons of bats by us and that is the only thing I worry about. Typically they don't bother me, but when they swoop by me, I kind of run for cover! I have seen them clean up insects out of our yard, so I'm fine with them staying...so long as they don't get into the house. Very well written and informative hub!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Crafty - Thanks for reading and commenting. I'm glad there's someone else who appreciates all the good things bats do. Have a great day!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Amazing and Awesome Hub! I love bats. My grandfather had an old barn on his farm. When I was a kid, I would see bats crawling down the walls inside the barn and then fly out at dusk. They never creeped me out. I think they are so cool. I put up a bat house outside here, but I could never attract them in it. We have them though because they fly around at night outside.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      LKMore01 - Wow, I do appreciate the compliments! Thanks for reading and commenting. I love to learn about various animals and am glad others do as well.

    • LKMore01 profile image

      LKMore01 3 years ago

      Awesome. Nothing short of brilliant, Flourish. Batman has always been my favorite superhero and not just because of gorgeous Christian Bale. This is truly one, if not the most informative, educational and comprehensive articles about the subject of bats I have discovered. Many kudos to you!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Writer Fox - Thanks for reading and commenting. You're right -- any animal that converges in groups can make you feel intimidated.

    • Writer Fox profile image

      Writer Fox 3 years ago from the wadi near the little river

      Very informative and the pictures are great! One thing about bats is that they always move in a crowd. That's one of the reasons why they are so scary! Voted up.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Frank - Thanks for reading and commenting. Bats are fascinating creatures and I learned a lot while researching this hub. Glad you found it interesting and educational, too.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      what an incredible intelligent hub you've posted truth be told the myths you've listed here was facts in my mind..im glad you cleared that up :) Frank

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Anna - Thanks for reading and commenting. You're right -- bats are clever little creatures and unfortunately misunderstood.

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

      Very interesting. Every species has a role to play. You provided lots of clear information and even how it can benefit our human world.

      You have definitely shown that bats are really clever little creatures whom are just a little misunderstood.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image
      Author

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Ms Dora - Bats are so busy performing us helpful services while they help themselves to bug meals. It's a shame we don't value them more. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Flourish, very interesting. Every creature is on this earth for a reason, and humans can learn to fulfill their tasks like these creatures do. I read some of your other summaries, and I know that I have to read some of your articles. Thank you for these valuable life perspectives.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Availiavision - Thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to comment. Bats are one of the most feared animals probably because of their unfamiliarity (being nocturnal) and the unfortunate reputation that precedes them. I'm glad you can appreciate their impact to the environment and to the economy despite their offputting looks. (If you look at enough photos of their faces, they might even grow to be "cute" looking in a certain way?)

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      Jennifer Arnett 3 years ago from California

      What a fun and interesting hub. I still think that bats are creepy looking, but I have a new appreciation for their contribution to society. I can't believe that they can eat 1200 mosquitoes an hour.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Jodah - It's unfortunate that fruit bats are finding themselves in that situation in Australia and especially that shooting them is condoned by local government. Although they can host Influenze A, MERS, and many other viruses, killing them is surely bound to cause unintended negative impacts economically and to the environment. Very sad. Thanks for reading and commenting. I appreciate your support. .

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      kidscrafts - Thanks for visiting and adding such interesting comments. I loved the video, too, although it was very sad watching that little bat get consumed. I think you're right getting your indoor cats vaccinated, as sometimes odd things happen (like a bat getting in your living quarters) or the cats get outside unintentionally.

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      kidscrafts 3 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      Just a fantastic hub, Flourish! Those animals are so important in the food pyramid and not enough people know about it! We have to protect them!

      What a great video you added to your hub; the birth of those little bats, the way they have to stay put all night long waiting for their mom to come back and the way they find those moth in that huge sky.... just fascinating! The sad part are those little ones that are not strong enough and are eaten by the flesh eating bugs :-( They are also part of the food chain!

      In Ottawa if you don't vaccinate your cat or dog against the rabies and a bat comes in your home you could get a fine. My cats are indoor cats but I prefer them to be vaccinated.... you never know!

      Great choice of pictures to illustrate your hub!

      Definitely voted way up, useful, interesting and awesome :-)

      Have a great day, Flourish!

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      John Hansen 3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Very interesting and educational hub Flourish. Your "Lessons Learned From.." series offers a fun way to learn. As your article shows, humans can learn a lot socially from bat colonies.

      Fruit bats, or flying foxes, as we like to call them are a touchy subject here in Australia at present, though. This is mainly due to their increasing numbers despite their decreasing natural habitat. They are becoming a problem for farmers and city dwellers alike. Recent increasing deaths from the 'Hendra' and 'Bat Lyssarvirus' has made the matter worse, and though listed as a 'protected' species, some Councils are allowing farmers to try to relocate the bat colonies or shoot them.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_bat_lyssav...

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      DDE - Thanks for reading and commenting. Bats are such diverse and fascinating animals. I'm glad you found the hub informative and enjoyable.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Justin - I'm glad you visited and enjoyed learning about this helpful animal. Thanks for reading and commenting!

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      bravewarrior - Thanks for reading and commenting. I'm sure they really come in handy in Florida and other areas where there are lots of mosquitoes.

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      justinevondall 3 years ago

      Very interesting! I'll be the first to admit I had many misconceptions of this species, I'm glad I stumbled upon your Hub!

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      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Lessons Learned From Bats: How To Live Your Best Life when I saw the title I had to get in an dread about the lessons learned and I am amazed by the way you presented this hub the photos are so lovely and definitely educational, and informative about bats. So much I didn't know until I read this hub. Voted up,useful, interesting, awesome and beautiful

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      This is a fascinating article, Flourish. We have bats here in Central Florida. I see them starting around dusk. Funny, tho - I usually only see 2 or 3 at a time.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Martin - Thank you for reading and commenting. Bats are marvelous helpers and have a lot to teach us all.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Truthfornow - Thank you for stopping by. Bats are awesome creatures, Nd so often we don't even know they are there. I was interested to learn that when they fly, they actually flap their "fingers" too.

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      Martin Kloess 3 years ago from San Francisco

      I like the way you put this together. thank you

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      truthfornow 3 years ago from New Orleans, LA

      I have learned so much about bats from reading this hub. I never see any bats around where I live, and we could sure use some. I love their wings and the way they wrap themselves up.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Heidi - Thanks for the encouragement and kind words. I love learning about animals and drawing connections to human health and psychology. Glad you enjoy my little series. My husband has suggested that I get back to writing HR hubs, but the critters keep tugging at me. They have so much to say!

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      Heidi Thorne 3 years ago from Chicago Area

      I am absolutely loving your animal lessons hubs! You've selected some amazing photos, too.

      Bats are some of the most intriguing mammals. And publishing this just in time for Halloween? Genius! Well done and Happy Halloween!

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Hi, Faith - Thanks for reading and commenting. I am glad you appreciated the debunked myths. In researching this, I think I have half convinced myself I have bats in my attic. Probably just batty myself. Have a great evening.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Awesome Flourish, well, you debunked all those myths for me! I never knew all of this about bats, how wonderful. Excellent hub! I love your humor here too. Great photos.

      Up and more and sharing

      Hugs, Faith Reaper

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Nell Rose - Isn't that an interesting fact? Unfortunately sometimes they have babies that will continue to hang on them and attempt to nurse. The dying pup can stay on there for up to 10 days. I wish I could witness a large bat colony like you were able to do. I've got it on my list. My husband witnessed a large bat cave exodus at dusk in Arizona, and he still vividly recalls it. Thanks for reading, voting, and commenting!

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Jo - Glad you enjoyed this, and I'm even happier that your mom was convinced by your husband to see the bats as the good guys. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      OldRoses - Thanks for stopping by. Animals can teach us so much, and I love to learn about their behavior then draw connections with psychology and health. Have a great day!

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      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      I never knew that if a bat died upside down it would stay there till it got knocked off! lol! seriously, this was fascinating, I love bats, we have a few round where I live. I remember going to Morocco a few years ago and going to a 'bat cave' called the cave of hercules. It was amazing, one word from the guy who was taking us round and all of a sudden, whoosh! thousands of them took to the sky! amazing! voted up!

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Bill - Glad you enjoyed the intro. I usually work especially hard on that part. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Flourish, this is a wonderful and very informative article! When we visited my mum in the Caribbean many years ago, she use to chase the bats away with a very big stick. One day my husband told her about the volume of Mosquitoes that are consumed by bats, and her stick just disappeared. :).

      We must learn to live in a mutualistic symbiotic relationship with nature or we all lose. A thoroughly superb hub, loved it.

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      Caren White 3 years ago from Franklin Park, NJ

      Great hub! I love the fact that you compare human behavior to animal behavior in your hubs. we have lost touch with the natural world. Learning about animal behavior benefits us and animals.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very clever article. I loved the introduction. You had me hooked immediately. Nicely done!

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