Where to find them: This widely distributed species, along the west coast of the North America, has a range from southern British Columbia through Montana to central Mexico.
Roosting: The pallid bat roosts in a variety of places but favors rocky outcrops. They can be found roosting in anything from caves, rock crevices, mines, hollow trees, to buildings. At night they choose temporary roosts for resting between feeding bouts that are near, but different from, day roosts.
Diet:A. pallidus is an insectivorous bat and has a unique foraging pattern among North American bats. They fly very close to the ground, then dip down to grab ground-dwelling prey. This bat has extremely good hearing and the foraging strategy allows bats to use passive hearing to find prey moving on the ground. They may also make contact with the ground to grab larger prey. They also forage for insects among leaves and flowers. Additionally, they will take smaller prey in the air using echolocation. Pallid bats take larger prey back to their roosts and remove hard parts, such as wings, legs, and heads, from prey before consuming them.
Unique traits: Pallid bats use vocalizations to locate other members of their group. There are four main call types used to communicate with other individuals: a directive call is used to find another individual, a call consisting of squabble notes tells bats how to space themselves when roosting, a buzz call used for intraspecific encounters, and ultrasonic pulses for orientation and communicating exploratory activity to other individuals. Another unique trait is how agile they are on the ground; they are good at crawling and climbing.
Recent research:Barber tested if A. pallidus is able to process two different streams of auditory information simultaneously while hunting. This research shows that pallid bats behaviorally modulate their echolocation calls to be able to switch focus between two streams of auditory information, but cannot truly dually orient themselves via echolocation and listen to insect movement. (Barber et al., 2003)
Where to find them: Halmahera Islands, Banda and Aru Islands, Bismarck Archipelago, Moluccas, New Guinea, Admiralty and Solomon Islands and the Cape York peninsula of Australia.
Roosting: The common tube-nosed bat roosts individually on the trunk of trees or branches. Their wings are covered with irregularly sized and spaced, yellow spots that act as camouflage while they roost.
Diet:N. albiventer is primarily frugivorous, however it may also eat nectar and insect remains have been found in the stomachs of a few specimens. To eat fruit, the bat will hang horizontally biting off small chunks of fruit.
Unique traits: This bat has a unique face, with long tubular nostrils and very large eyes. The function of the tubular nostrils is unclear, however they could aid in finding fruit through olfaction or be used in the production of sound as the nasal tubes stretch and vibrate when the bat emits a high whistling call.
Recent research: N. albiventer has been of interest in various feeding studies. One study documents the fruit handling behavior in both Old World (Pteropodidae) and New World fruit bats (Phyllostomidae).While there is variation in the fruit handling behavior among all bat in this study, N. albiventer primarily held fruit with their stomach as opposed to with their wings, like most New world fruit bats (Vandoros & Dumont 2004).
Where to find them: Southern Mexico to the South Eastern Edge of Brazil
Roosting: Spix’s disk winged bat roost in the partly unfurled leaves of trees of the genus Heliconia (palm). Their roost colony size is about 6. These bats change roosts often, every day or so, because as leaves mature they unfurl and are no longer habitable roosts.
Diet:T. tricolor is an aerial insectivore, catching insects while in flight. It consumes about 1 gram of insects a day, including beetles and flies.
Unique traits: At the base of their thumbs and ankles is a disk-shaped suction cups that they use to cling to the Heliconia leaves in which they roost. One of these disks is strong enough to support the bat’s entire weight. They also posses “warts” on their noses, it is hypothesized these “warts” are extra sensory organs.
Recent research: T. tricolor uses call-and response systems to find group members. Flying bats can discriminate between the inquiry and response calls emitted by group and non-group members (Chaverri 2012).
Where to find them: Southern Mexico, Central America, and the northern half of South America.
Roosting: Common big-eared bats roost in small groups of 4-6 in a variety of structures, including hollow trees, logs, caves, culverts, buildings, and animal burrows.
Diet:M. microtis is a diverse animalivore that gleans all kinds of insects, from beetles to dragonflies to caterpillars. The known prey species of these bats span 12 different orders of arthropods. In addition, it has been observed to kill and eat small lizards, making it the smallest known carnivorous bat.
Unique traits: To manage the different mechanical properties of its diverse array of food, the skull shape of M. microtis appears to have rapidly evolved in order to maximize its mechanical advantage and it can easily modify its biting behavior when eating prey of different hardness (Santana et al. 2011).
Where to find them: Southern Mexico to Peru and SE Brazil.
Roosting: To make their home, these bats bite along the main vein of the large leaves ofpalms. This causes leaves to droop and form a “tent”, which provides shelter for the bats, particularly from rain. They roost in colonies from 2 to 59 individuals and they roost tightly clumped together.
Unique traits: These bats are easy to spot; they have a white stripe above and below each eye and a narrow white stripe along their back.
Diet: They feed primarily on fruit.
Recent research: Coconut palms were introduced recently in the Neotropics and tent-making bats have developed the ability to use them for roosting. These bats seem to be expanding their range following the expanded distribution of this exotic plant species and into human-modified areas.
Photo credit: Clockwise from top left[ Merlin Tuttle][http://animaldiversity.org.][http://mbopiparaguay.wordpress.com/murcielagos-de-paraguay/phyllostomidae/subfamilia-stenodermatinae/sturnira-lilium/][Merlin Tuttle]
These bats are frugivorous, primarily feeding on fruit from the Solanaceae family.
These bats often roost alone, but can roost with up to 10 members.
Bats have scent glands on the shoulder. Some say the scent smells like iodine, others say the scent is spicy.
They are very important in terms of seed dispersal since they eat a variety of fruits from a variety of plant families, not limited to Solanaceae.