Each suborder has their own set of attributes, qualities, and characteristics. Megabats dine on the delicious nectar, flowers, juices, and pollen of fruit, which explains the reason they’re colloquially known as fruit bats. Whereas Microbats have a tendency to stick with a wide range of small to medium-sized insects. Because we could probably agree that fruit is sweet and filling, most people know what tastes good for a fruit bat.
But what about microbats? Do pests all taste alike, or are there bugs that taste better? Well luckily, researchers at the United Kingdom’s University of Bristol and the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario Canada really want to understand what Microbats prefer to eat the most. So they decided to perform a study to learn their favorite meals! Continue reading to find out what they found and how.
Bat Guano Studies
Over a course of four weeks, between May and August of 2010, researchers detected three distinct roosts of Myotis lucifugus, and non-invasively accumulated bat guano (droppings) samples. Known as little brown bats, Myotis lucifugus are a common species of microbat now being threatened by a deadly fungal disease named White-Nose Syndrome. This fungus looks like a white powder which covers their face and nose. It disrupts hibernation, inducing anglers to exert their energy reserves and perish.
Researchers wanted to learn about the surrounding environment, so they began by extracting the DNA of insects that were found in the bat guano samples. Then they identified the little areas where the insect DNA was extracted, and paired that data to the databases of known insect DNA. This gave them the specific species of insect that bats were eating and here is what they found!
Their studies implied that bats prefer to consume insects which live close to bodies of water, such as rivers, creeks, streams, and ponds. In the study, they also concluded that little brown bats are “locavores”, meaning they travel just a few hundred meters from home each night to hunt for food. Additionally, their diet changes with the seasons, and also the type of prey available to them.
Bats, though intriguing to learn about, may also be a pest to many property owners. They could enter buildings and homes, build nests, create enormous unsanitary messes, and trigger expensive damages. If you’re experiencing bat problems, or suspect you have a bat in the attic or other area of your home, speak to a trusted wildlife or Bird Control firm right away for non-lethal bat removal solutions.