Little Brown Bats
Little brown bats are small.
Their fur is glossy, and can Range in color from dark brown, golden brown or reddish brown. The fur on the belly is lighter than the fur on the back.
Wings and membranes between the legs are dark brown or black, and have almost no hair. Little brown bats have small ears.
Large hind feet.
Weight 1/4 oz to 1/2 oz
Average Length 3 1/2 oz
Average Wingspan 9 1/2oz
Sexual maturity reached around 7 months of age.
Mating Mid August into winter months. Females delay ovulation and store sperm for about seven months before they actually get pregnant in spring.
Pregnancy lasts 50 to 60 days. Pups are born in June and July. Females give birth to only one pup each year, sometimes two.
Pups are weaned between 21 - 28 days of age.
Pups are born with a full set of teeth.
The pups eyes and ears open within hours of birth.
When the bat pups are 9 - 10 days old and can control their body temperature.
Pups can hear as well as adults by the time they are 13 days old.
Young bats can fly by the time they are 3 weeks old.
Pups are dependent on the mother bat but will become independent and self-supporting about 4 weeks after they are born.Â
At 4 weeks they are as big as adults.
Average lifespan is 6-7 years but have lived as long as 30 years in captivity.
Bats feed at night. Starting at dusk. They will feed for 2-3 hours, return to the nest to rest and then head back out to feed a couple hours before dawn.
Little brown bats hibernate during the winter. Hibernation usually starts between September - November and ends in March - May , depending on temperature and the food supply.
During hibernation, little brown bats will enter a deep sleep. Signals for the end of hibernation include warmer weather and arousal of other bats in the colony.
Little brown bats use echolocation to find prey. With echolocation, the bat sends a sound and listens for the echo. From the echo, the bat can determine where an object is located. Echolocation allows them to find bugs to eat, and to avoid hitting objects while flying.
Little brown bats eat insects. Bats will catch whatever insects are available. Their food may be captured straight out of the air, or may be picked off of surfaces.
An active bat can eat half of its own body weight in insects each night. Females with nursing young can eat 110 percent of their body weight per night.
Bats control insect populations as well as insect pests that transmit diseases and that eat agricultural products. They are also predators of mosquitoes and other pest around human habitats.
Little brown bats have some possible negative effects on humans. These bats live in attics, roofs, trees, and other areas that put them into contact with humans. Bats can carry rabies. Bats can carry parasites such tapeworms, fleas, mites and bat bugs which a similar to bed bugs.
Problems Bats Face:
Little brown bats are not endangered but their numbers have been greatly reduced by a fungal disease called white-nose syndrome. The fungus grows best in cold, humid conditions that are typical of many bat hibernacula. The fungus grows and in invades the bodies of hibernating bats. Affected bats will wake from hibernation which waste the bodies of fat stores for winter which can cause mass deaths. Mortality rates at some hibernation sites have been as high as 90%.
Pups: A term for newborn bats and young bats.
Weaning: Wean the mother stops feeding milk and introduces insect feeding.
Hibernation: A period of deep sleep during winter when food is unavailable.
Echolocation: Noise produced by bats which echos back to tell where food and obstacles are located.
Endangered: When a species is at risk of extinction.
White-Nose Syndrome: A fungus that attacks bats during hibernation where it is cold and humid.
Hibernacula: A place were a group of bats will congregate together to over winter and hibernate.