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What Do Bats Eat? Find Out Some Interesting Bat Food Choices!

What Do Bats Eat? Find Out Some Interesting Bat Food Choices!

What’s the first thing that crosses your mind, when you think of a blood sucking animal - Of course Bats! 

With all the myths that go around this night rider, it turns out that bats don't really survive on blood. In fact they happen to have a versatile palette of food and also have some favourite tastes. 

So what do they really eat? Let's find out.

Given how there are more than 1000 species of bats, the food choices differ for all of these bat families. Being one of the finest predators, they are naturally sensitive to slightest movements and faintest sounds

Their food choices range from small insects, fruits, pollens, and to animal blood; all of which we will be talking about in a minute. 

Before jumping on to what bats eat, how about looking at a short review of what are some of the popular species and what potential foods they can be eating.

  • Microbats 
  • Megabats 
  • Vampire bats 

Microbats

Microbats are smaller and much lighter in their colour. Rather, most microbats are a bit different from their cousins because of their brown colour. 

Microbats are known to use echolocation to look for food. Now how does that work you ask?

In most cases, bats while hunting for food emit high pitched sounds randomly. Often the insects that are in close proximity bounce off these high pitched sounds, giving away their location. This process can go on for hours. 

Megabats 

These interesting sets of branch bat family, use their powerful sense of smell to locate their food. Studies have shown that megabats have sharp pointed noses that increase their ability to smell. Once they have located their prey, these bats signal other fellow bats of food and then hunt in a pack. Now how cool is that!

Vampire Bats

I bet you thought blood. And yes you might be right here. 

Vampire bats are blood sucking creatures BUT not for humans. Vampire bats are known to suck blood off other insects, cows, pigs, horses and birds. Unlike the typical concept of a blood sucking bats, vampire bats are very much gentle with their prey. Most of the time the prey doesn't even know! 

For example, vampire bats will make a small incision on a sleeping cow and drink their share. They have a heat-sensing ability that allows them to locate the most rich and warm part of blood on an animal. 

What do Bats Eat?

There are many things that bats eat. For example a microbat will mostly feed on small insects like mosquitoes, moths, crickets, beetles, flies. Whereas the megabats such as flying foxes and fruit bats like to eat mostly fruits. 

Some even like to have pollen and nectar as their food of choice. Vampire bats however, can only survive on other animal’s blood. All of their body functions and nutrients can be made through blood feeding.

Here are few foods that bats eat:

  • Mosquitos 
  • Moths
  • Crickets 
  • Beetles
  • Chinch bugs 
  • Bananas 
  • Papaya 
  • Guava 
  • Figs 
  • Other variety of fruits 
  • Pollen 
  • Nectar 
  • Blood (for the vampire bats only)

Some Commonly Asked Questions on What Do Bats Eat

What insects do bats eat?

As mentioned, microbats eat small insects that are mostly earth-ridden insects such as crickets. However bats also eat beetles and moths mostly. 

What do bats mostly eat?

Again, this depends on bat groups, but since most bats are flying bats and fruit bats, they often eat extra ripped fruits like guavas, bananas, papaya and melons. 

What do bats eat at night?

Bats at night mostly look for insects and pollen as their food. As per vampire bats they prefer to hunt at night as mostly animals are asleep. 

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