Before we dive into some primary bat habits, it’s important to note that they are a nocturnal species. This means they sleep during the day and are most active at night. These creatures love habits and repeat what they do over and over every day.
Bats Nighttime Habits and Routine
What is the life of a bat at night like? Nighttime means feeding time for bats. Mosquitos are the favorite item on the menu for bats. A single bat can eat up to 1,200 mosquitos every hour and up to 6,000-8,000 every night. This nocturnal mammal also eats grasshoppers, crickets, beetles, flies, etc.– pretty much any insect makes their food of choice list.
The number of insects that they eat gives you an idea of why they leave such a mess behind when they roost in the attic of a home. With the amount of food they consume each night, they have to digest and release the food constantly to be able to keep their metabolism running.
Not what bats drink is interesting, but how they drink. Since bats cannot fly when their wings are wet and with them not being proficient swimmers, drinking water can be a very dangerous and risky task for bats. These issues lead to many bats dying and drowning in the attempt to drink water. How bats get to their drinking source makes the quest even more dangerous. Bats swoop down with their bottom jaw open and scoop the water into their mouths and then fly away. If the bat makes one wrong move or hits one wave, it will end up in the water. Once this happens they typically drown or die of exhaustion from trying to swim and stay afloat for a long period of time.
All night, bats eat insects and dive for water. While their nighttime routine seems a little chaotic and busy, their daytime routine is a lot calmer.
Daytime Bat Habits
A bat’s daytime is more like a human’s night time. Daytime is all about relaxing! It’s time to calm down and rest up after a busy night of feeding and flying. Every day, bats retreat to their sleeping spot, however, they don’t usually rest alone.
When you find one bat, you usually find more. Depending on the space and environment they are living in, bats will live in colonies of 10 to 5000. Predators are always lurking, which is why bats choose to sleep in large numbers. This is also why they sleep upside down, to stay warm, and protect themselves. A colony, all sleeping near one another, is another reason why they can create such a mess in the attic of a home.
When a bat begins to roost during the day it will usually stay in that same spot unless it is disrupted by something else—which is the reason that bat guano buildup is usually in piles due to them being so close to each other and constantly releasing guano. The piles of guano can become very large. When the piles of urine and feces become too large, they can be harmful. When bat guano gets clumped together in big piles it compacts and creates spores. When those spores are broken they release toxic fumes into the air and if breathed in, it can become very deadly. Breathing in harmful fumes creates a disease call histoplasmosis. It is a respiratory disease with the main symptoms of fever and respiratory discomfort.
So as stated off the top, bats are creatures of habit. They typically don’t change their routine and won’t do a lot of other things than the activities listed here.