January 15, 2017

Sunday Selfies

We're pawticipating in The Cat on My Head's Sunday Selfies today.



Last weekend, Mom and Dad attended a class all about BATS!  Scary yes?  Not really!  Bats are great for the environment.  Did you know that bats can eat their body weight in insects?   Our city is putting up bat houses to keep the bats that are already here in areas like our ball fields and skate parks.  Bats are a safe and environmentally sound way to control mosquitos...not like spraying chemicals all over us.


Here's a cool story about how one of these bats broke a speed record recently:

When most people think of animals moving at high speed, they envision cheetahs or swiftly diving raptors, but probably not small and unfamiliar nocturnal flying mammals. Yet, a new study suggests that Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) may achieve speeds of up to 160 kilometers (99.42 miles) per hour in level flight. This ranks this species of bats faster than any previously documented bird or bat in level flight.
“These are the fastest powered flight speeds documented yet in any vertebrate that is, in bats or birds,” Explains Gary McCracken of the University of Tennessee in Knoxville New Scientist. “We didn’t expect these results, even though the Brazilian free-tailed bats are known for their exceptional fast flight.”
This may be due to their aerodynamic body shape and longer-than-average wings compared to other bat species. Animals with long and narrow wings are typically built for faster flight. Consider the fastest bird on record for level flight, the common swift (Apus apus), which can reach speeds around 112 km/h. Peregrine falcons can reach speeds of up to 300 kilometers per hour, but only when diving.
“Most of the time, these animals [Brazilian free-tailed bats] are moving at moderate speeds, but what we see here is that they exceed these expectations and quite dramatically for brief periods of time,” McCracken says.
McCracken and colleagues at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology used an airplane tracking method to document moderate flight speeds of the Brazilian free-tailed bats, and observed bouts of very rapid flight.
“We don’t know the behavioral context of why these bats are doing this, but they must have a good reason as flight is the most expensive form of animal locomotion,” McCracken says.
A small radio transmitter was attached to the backs of the bats and was tracked using a mobile receiver on a small aircraft. The scientists also evaluated data from nearby weather stations to note wind conditions at the time of the studied flights.
This study sheds new light on the mystery of bats and may help reshape public perception of these elusive mammals.
This is Boca.  Like that speedy bat in the story, Boca is a Brazilian Free-tailed bat.   Boca had never done a selfie before and had some problems holding the camera steady....

Here's Boca's "official"press photo.....


Want to learn more about Bats???  Click HERE to read about how important they are AND to learn how all those scary stories about bats are NOT true!  Mom and Dad have purchased a bat house and are putting it up in our yard.....we'll keep you posted!



27 comments:

edie said...

I knew bats were fast, but I didn't realize how fast.

Summer at sparklecat.com said...

How awesome that your humans are getting a bat house! My human has been a fan of bats, and how beneficial they are, for a long time! She would love to have a bat house but is not sure where she would put it on our property.

Katie Kat said...

The Mom and I learned something today! More bat houses, less mosquitoes! -Katie Kitty Too.

Momma Kat and Her Bear Cat said...

Boca is so incredibly cute! I have no idea why people are afraid of bats ... I've always thought they are cute. I had no idea bats could fly so fast though ... though I definitely understand that flying is probably the highest energy requirement form of movement (and swimming too).

Mickey's Musings said...

That is quite a story and Boca is mighty cute.
We have brown bats here, but they are dying out due to "white nose"
This condition causes them to come out of hibernation too early, while it is still cold and there are no insects.
We purr scientists will be able to find a cure before the population is wiped out.
Purrs Georgia,Julie and JJ

Roby Sweet said...

Bats are really cool animals, and so beneficial since they eat all those nasty insects. Boca looks hardly big enough to hold the camera, so no wonder he had a little trouble with his selfie!

Madi and Mom said...

OH MY BATS...what an interesting post.
We have heard about how beneficial bats are....and boy are we glad they like to eat mosquitoes cause the mosquitoes love to eat mom.
Hugs madi raz's gal

Brian said...

Bats are really amazing but I don't think I've seen any around here.

Lola The Rescued Cat said...

Well that's interesting! Mommy is afraid of bats, but maybe she shouldn't be.

Katie Isabella said...

My other favorite brother wants a bat house too!

Erin the Cat said...

Working with nature can be mutually beneficial for everyone, and that little guy is so very cute, though not in a cuddling sense, but we'd still love to have some more around here as they are beautiful to watch at night... Have a great week. purrs ERin

meowmeowmans said...

Bats are really cool! We have them around here, and we are thankful for all the good things they do. :)

pilch92 15andmeowing said...

I like bats and I am most thankful that they eat mosquitos. Nice selfie.

Gracie=^o.o^= said...

Bats are not very nice looking but I think scary. We have seen a few flying by once in a while out where we live and mom says they will eat the bugs and that is nice that they do that. Did you all pet that bat?

speedyrabbit said...

Bats are such interesting creatures and cute too,xx Speedy

Terri said...

Bats are wonderful but misunderstood by most people. We're happy your city recognizes the benefits of having bats.

Pee Ess: Boca is really cute!

onespoiledcat said...

Bats are cool. We (Mom and me) used to see bats every single morning when we'd go out for our walk at 4AM....lots of them swooping around capturing the flying night bugs. Then we stopped seeing them.....not sure why. Boca takes a nice selfie!

Hugs, Angel Sam

Three Chatty Cats said...

Oh my, who knew that bats were so fast!!! Very interesting. It's so tiny in your hand!

♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥ said...

Those bats sure are FAST!!! We knew they do a great job for insect control, but Mom says they would freak her out if they got inside our home:)

Woos - Lightning and Misty

The Swiss Cats said...

How interesting ! Boca is so tiny, he did great with the selfie ! Purrs

The Island Cats said...

Bats are really good for the environment. Our neighbor has a bat house so we see them occasionally. And then there's BatMan and we all know how cool he is. ;)

Hairballsandhissyfits.com said...

i love bats and they are so vital to the environment! Glad you introduced him!

Melissa, Mudpie and Angel Truffles (Mochas, Mysteries and Meows) said...

That's so interesting! I always thought bats were super cute!

Jean Dion said...

What a sweet little bat! We have plenty of them here in Oregon, and last summer, we got up close and personal with them. Hubby found what looked like a piece of trash on the lawn, and when he picked it up, it hissed. At that point, he realized the trash was a bat! We worked with a rescue team, and put the bat in a bucket up high in a tree. Later in the day, he flew away. And boy, were we happy!

Jean from Welcome to the Menagerie

Nellie Kowalik said...

Mes LOVES bats! When wes lived in Midway they had bat houses up all over the Village and they flies over our house to catch the bugs over the river at dusk and into the night. Wes had to takes the bat house out of our yard because Jo Jo wanted to eats them! What a great selfie yous gotted of Boca!!!
Kisses
Nellie

Kitties Blue said...

W know how good bats are for keeping the insect problem in check, and this little guy is rather cute, but Mom is sort of scared of bats. This happened about 40 years ago when one got in our house. Thanks for sharing this cute guy for selfies. Our first bat on the hop. We send love to all, and Mau sends Allie 300 bazillion smooches, love and purrs. XOCK, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Angel Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth, Calista Jo and Cooper Murphy.

Dash Kitten said...

Thanks for a really great post, it was a to of fun and so interesting to read. Those small bats are totally amazing! I love that the city is putting up bat houses! All cities should be so environmentally conscious!

Harvey Button