19 of the Cutest Bat Species (2022)

Bats are misunderstood creatures. The reputation they've earned through scary stories and myths doesn't match their cute, furry appearance, or the important role these prodigious bug-catchers play in ecosystems worldwide.

With more than 1,400 identified bat species, they are the second most diverse order of mammal, outnumbered only by rodents. Bats are traditionally divided into two broad categories, megabats and microbats, though these classifications have more to do with their behavior than their size. Microbats use echolocation to hunt live prey, while megabats generally do not echolocate and feed on fruit.

Scientists have discovered species that defy this classification system, though, and it's no longer regarded as entirely accurate. In any case, bat species are wildly diverse, ranging from flying foxes with 5-foot wingspans to tiny species that fit in the palm of your hand.

Here are 19 bat species that prove that these high-flying mammals are vital members of the animal kingdom, and quite photogenic to boot.

1

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Egyptian Fruit Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (1)

The Egyptian fruit bat (Rousettus aegyptiacus) is a large species found throughout Africa, the Middle East, and India. It's considered a megabat, a family of 197 large fruit-eating bats.

With a 2-foot wingspan, it's an average size megabat species. It's a highly social animal and usually roosts in caves by the thousands.

It's generally the microbats that are known as skillful sonar hunters, but the Egyptian fruit bat is the rare megabat that does use a rudimentary form of echolocation.

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California Leaf-Nosed Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (2)

The California leaf-nosed bat (Macrotus californicus) earns its name because of the fleshy bump, called a noseleaf, that grows above its snout.It has a wingspan of about 1 foot and large ears that are greater in size than its head.

It has short, broad wings that are best suited to acrobatics and slow speeds, rather than long-distance travel, and it does not migrate.

California leaf-nosed bats prefer to forage for ground-dwelling insects like crickets and beetles, which they are able to snatch thanks to their excellent eyesight.

3

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Honduran White Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (3)

The Honduran white bat (Ectophylla alba) is a highly specialized species found in Central America, and one of only six bat species with white fur.

It roosts in groups of up to 15 bats in broad leaves, which it cuts with its teeth to modify into a tent shape. Its diet is special as well—it's a fruit eater that subsists mainly on a single type of fig.

Due to its unique housing and dietary needs, the Honduran white bat is especially vulnerable to deforestation, and is listed as anear-threatened species by the IUCN.

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(Video) 20 Most BIZARRE Bat Species

Indian Flying Fox

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (4)

The Indian flying fox (Pteropus medius) is one of the largest bat species, weighing up to 3.5 pounds and boasting a wingspan of nearly 5 feet. It's found throughout the Indian subcontinent and roosts in large groups in tree canopies.

It's not a picky eater, foraging for many types of fruits, as well as leaves and insects. In some regions, flying foxes are seen as pests, especially near fruit orchards where they can damage crops.However, studies largely show that their role as pollinators outweighs the economic harm they cause.

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Big Brown Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (5)

The big brown bat (Eptesicus fuscus) is a common species found widely throughout North and Central America. It's a fairly large species of microbat, the family of bats that make up 70% of all bat species.

It exhibits nearly all the behaviors bats are best known for—roosting upside down in caves and tunnels and snatching flying insects at night using echolocation. The brig brown bat eats a wide variety of beetles and insects, and farmers will sometimes set upbat boxesto attract them as a form of pest control.

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Peter's Dwarf Epauletted Fruit Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (6)

Peters's dwarf epauletted fruit bat (Micropteropus pusillus) is something of an oxymoron—it's classified as amegabat despite its small stature. While megabats do trend larger than microbats, the main difference between the two groups is that microbats echolocate while megabats usually do not.

This dwarf species is native to Africa, where it resides in tropical forests and woodlands. Thanks to its diet of fruit and nectar, it's an important pollinator of tropical plants.

Brown Long-Eared Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (7)

The brown long-eared bat(Plecotus auritus) is a species native to Europe and Asia with, yes, distinctive ears that are nearly as long as the rest of its body.

It prefers higher altitudes, and is commonly found roosting in hollow trees in parks and forests. Despite the enormous ears, studies have found that long-eared bats tend to hunt insects by sight rather than echolocation.

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Striped Yellow-Eared Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (8)

The striped yellow-eared bat (Vampyriscus nymphaea) is a species ofleaf-nosed bat with a unique color adaptation—white stripes across its forehead and jaw. It's found in Central and South America, from Nicaragua to Ecuador.

While its nose seems singular as well, the leaf-nosed bat family is actually large and diverse, with at least 160 member species. They share the distinctive nose shape and feed on everything from insects, to fruit, to blood. They can be found across the Americas in tropical rainforests, woodlands, and deserts.

(Video) Bat Species - All Bat Species In The World

9

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Greater Horseshoe Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (9)

The greater horseshoe bat (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum) is a species of bat with a distinctive U-shaped nose. It's not for cosmetic reasons; the unique shape helps to direct the ultrasound waves it produces to navigate using echolocation.

It has a wide range that stretches from Europe and North Africa across Asia to Japan. It's not an endangered species, but it is protected in the United Kingdom due to locally declining numbers.

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Desert Long-Eared Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (10)

Found in arid environments from Morocco to the Middle East, the desert long-eared bat (Otonycteris hemprichii) is at home in inhospitable regions.

It has an unusual appetite among bats, feeding on large prey, including the highly venomous Palestine yellow scorpion. Researchers have observed its hunting tactics, and report that it can take a toxic scorpion sting to theface and continue its meal undeterred, eventually consuming the entire scorpion, including its barb and vemon sacs.

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Soprano Pipistrelle

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (11)

The soprano pipistrelle (Pipistrellus pygmaeus) is a European species that prefers a life near rivers and wetlands. Its diet consists mainly of aquatic midges and other insects.

It's closely related to the common pipistrelle, a more populous species, and the two were only categorized as different species in 1999, when researchers discovered that theirecholocation calls occur at different frequencies.

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Greater False Vampire Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (12)

The greater false vampire bat (Lyroderma lyra) is a species found in Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent in humid rainforests. It has a blueish tint to its gray fur, and as its name implies, is one of the larger species of vampire bats.

Unlike true vampire bats, which are among the leaf-nosed species in South America, false vampire bats do not feed on blood. That name is a relic of an old misconception. Still, Lyroderma lyradoes have one unique dietary choice—it's one of just three bat species known to eat other bats.

13

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Eastern Red Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (13)

The eastern red bat (Lasiurus borealis) is one of the most common species found in eastern North America. It's small-bodied, with reddish-brown fur, and consumes a diet of insects, including cutworm moths and other invasive pest species.

While many bats only produce one pup at a time, eastern red bats average three pups in a litter, which helps to explain its healthy population size.

14

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Kitti's Hog-Nosed Bat

Kitti's hog-nosed bat (Craseonycteris thonglongyai) is the smallest bat species and also one of the smallest mammals.

Also known as the bumblebee bat, this tiny species is perhaps the only bat small enough to be mistaken for an insect. Its body measures only an inch long and it weighs about as much as a dime.

Kitti's hog-nosed bats can be found only in limestone caves in Myanmar and northern Thailand, and are considered a threatened species due to habitat loss.

15

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Lesser Short-Nosed Fruit Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (15)

Found in South and Southeast Asia, the lesser short-nosed fruit bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) is a small species of megabat with a foxlike face.

The lesser short-nosed fruit bat eats all types of aromatic fruit but seems to prefer mangoes most of all. Like other fruit-eaters, it's an important pollinator, in this case for fruits like dates, bananas, avocados, mangoes, and peaches.

Its fur is mostly brown, but can turn orange near the shoulders in breeding adults.

16

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Spotted Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (16)

The spotted bat (Euderma maculatum) is unique both for the three white spots on its back, and for its ears, which are among the largest (relative to its body size) of any species.

It can be found throughout the Western United States and Mexico, including in cave structures on the walls of the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

Widespread use of pesticides like DDT led to a population decline in the 1960s, but it has stabilized since then, and the spotted bat is no longer considered endangered or even threatened.

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Hoary Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (17)

The hoary bat (Lasiurus cinereus) is a microbat species found in North and South America, as well as in Hawaii and the Galápagos Islands. It has brown fur with white tips, giving it a unique appearance.

Since its island habitats are so far removed from its continental range, these are considered disjunct populations, and how the bats came to inhabit both environments is unknown.

The Hawaiian hoary bat is theonly land mammal native to the Hawaiian Islandsand though the hoary bat's global population numbers are healthy, the Hawaiian population is considered federally endangered.

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Spectacled Flying Fox

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (18)

The spectacled flying fox (Pteropus conspicillatus) is a species of fruit-eating megabat that's found in Australia and New Guinea. Its common name stems from the light-colored fur that surrounds its eyes and nose.

The spectacled flying fox is a tree-dwelling bat and prefers the rainforests of coastal northern Australia to the arid climate of the rest of the country. Sadly, nearly a third of the population in Australia was killed during arecord-breaking heatwavein 2018, and the species is now considered endangered.

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Sulawesi Fruit Bat

19 of the Cutest Bat Species (19)

The Sulawesi fruit bat (Acerodon celebensis) is a megabat species native to the Sulawesi subregion of Indonesia.

It mainly feeds on coconuts and roosts in stands of mangrove trees, often alongside black flying foxes, which will occupy the treetops while the Sulawesi fruit bats roost on the lower branches.

This fruit bat species is widely hunted in Indonesia to be sold as bushmeat, and because of this, it is regionally extinct in what once was the northern reaches of its habitat. It is listed as avulnerable species.

FAQs

19 of the Cutest Bat Species? ›

19 of the Cutest Bat Species
  • of 19. Egyptian Fruit Bat. Seregraff / Getty Images. ...
  • of 19. California Leaf-Nosed Bat. Kristen Lalumiere / Flickr / Public Domain. ...
  • of 19. Honduran White Bat. ...
  • of 19. Indian Flying Fox. ...
  • of 19. Big Brown Bat. ...
  • of 19. Peter's Dwarf Epauletted Fruit Bat. ...
  • of 19. Brown Long-Eared Bat. ...
  • of 19. Striped Yellow-Eared Bat.

What is the coolest looking bat? ›

9 of the coolest bat species in the United States
  • Lesser long-nosed bat. No, the lesser long-nosed bat isn't normally yellow. ...
  • Hoary bat. ...
  • Pallid bat. ...
  • Little brown bat. ...
  • Mexican free-tailed bat. ...
  • Virginia big-eared bat. ...
  • California leaf-nosed bat. ...
  • Mariana Fruit bat.
Oct 24, 2018

What is the ugliest bat? ›

Known by a slew of names including the common woolly bat and Hardwicke's forest bat, Hardwicke's woolly bat looks like it belongs in a horror film.

How many species of bats exist? ›

1. There are over 1,400 species of bats worldwide. Bats can be found on nearly every part of the planet except in extreme deserts and polar regions . The difference in size and shape are equally impressive.

What is cutest animal in the world? ›

Top 10 Cutest Animals in 2022
  • If you love animals as much as we do, carry on reading to find out more about some of the top voted cutest animals around the globe..
  • Margay.
  • Red Panda.
  • Elephant Shrew.
  • Meerkat.
  • Qoukka.
  • Fennec Fox.
  • Klipspringer.

Can a bat be a pet? ›

A bat in the wild can live up to 30 years while only a few pet bats will make it to a year. Bats need special care, housing, and nutrition. They are complicated animals, making it almost impossible to take care of them properly even if you wanted to.

What is the rarest bat? ›

An endangered Florida bonneted bat, America's rarest bat, once thought to be extinct. America's rarest bat, the endangered Florida bonneted bat (Eumops floridanus), was once relatively common. It often lived in tile roofs of Coral Gables and Miami, and its loud, low-frequency echolocation calls made it easy to detect.

What is the most friendliest bat? ›

Vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus) form enduring relationships much like humans and other social primates, according to new research.

Are vampire bats real? ›

Yes, but not in most of the United States. Of the three species of vampire bats in North America, only a single specimen has been recorded for the United States in extreme southwest Texas. Vampire bats do not suck blood--they make a small incision with their sharp front teeth and lap up the blood with their tongue.

What is the scariest looking bat? ›

6 Terrifying Bats You Won't Believe Aren't Photoshopped
  1. 1 Hammer-Headed Bat (Hypsignathus monstrosus)
  2. 2 Tube-Nosed Fruit Bat (Nyctimene rabori) ...
  3. 3 Maclaud's Horseshoe Bat (Rhinolophus maclaudi) ...
  4. 4 Visored Bat (Sphaeronycteris toxophyllum) ...
  5. 5 Spotted Bat (Euderma maculatum) ...
  6. 6 Griffin's Leaf-Nosed Bat (Hipposideros griffini) ...
Jul 26, 2012

What is a scary animal? ›

Scariest animals in the world. Black Mamba - scariest animals. Black Widow - scariest animal - via inverse.com. Rats - scariest animal. Piranha - scariest animal.

What is the ugliest animal in the world? ›

Top Ten Ugliest Animals
  • The blobfish was elected the ugliest animal in the world in an online poll that we ran. ...
  • The giant Chinese salamander is the world's largest amphibian and it can breathe through its skin!
Jun 6, 2014

What is the largest bat? ›

The greater mastiff bat (Eumops perotis) is the largest bat in the United States. They can be easily identified by their very large ears which extend out over its nose.

Do bats poop from their mouth? ›

Bats don't have an anus and they poop through their mouth.

Bats are mammals and like all other mammals, they have a mouth and an anus which perform their individual functions.

Can you eat bats? ›

Fruit bats may be tasty but they concentrate toxin from cycad seeds. The idea was simple, chilling, and controversial: Chamorro people on Guam who feasted on a traditional delicacy, the giant fruit bat, may have ingested enough of a toxin to develop a rare and fatal neurodegenerative disorder.

What is the cutest animal in the world 2021? ›

Although according to the top 10 cutest animals, the animal that is listed in the first place is a margay cat. In 2021, this creature has been ranked as the world's cutest as well in the same article. The margay cat is followed by the red panda, who comes in second, the red panda is a resident of South Asia.

What is the most loved animal? ›

#1 Favorite and Most Popular Animals: Dogs.

What is the rarest animal in a zoo? ›

16 Extremely Rare Animals, and the US Zoos Where You Can See Them
  • Just a thought here, but you know what might be cooler than looking for insanely rare cartoon "animals" on your cellphone? ...
  • Blue lobster. ...
  • Okapi. ...
  • Red panda. ...
  • Addax. ...
  • Amur tiger. ...
  • Blue-crowned laughingthrush. ...
  • Borneo elephant.
Jul 21, 2016

Are bat blind or deaf? ›

No, bats are not blind. Bats have small eyes with very sensitive vision, which helps them see in conditions we might consider pitch black. They don't have the sharp and colorful vision humans have, but they don't need that.

Are bats nice? ›

They are only aggressive when they're frightened or provoked. While you should always treat any bat you come into contact with as a wild animal, they are gentle.

Can you adopt a bat? ›

By adopting a bat you will help us successfully treat and safely return numerous bats back to the wild. Not only will you be providing invaluable care and helping countless animals, but you will also receive an exclusive adoption pack. Included in your adoption pack: Species fact sheet.

Can you get white bats? ›

The Honduran white bat is notable for its all-white fur. It is one of only six bat species that have all-white fur, and there are about 1300 bat species.

What is the rarest bat in UK? ›

A gray big-eared bat (Plecotus austriacus) emerges from its roost in a barn in Devon, England. It's the rarest bat still breeding in the U.K. today.

How big is the biggest bat in the UK? ›

In flight they are fast and jerky as they dodge about chasing small insects, which they can catch and eat on the wing. Most British bats are small with wingspans shorter than a sparrow. However, our largest bat, the noctule, can have a wingspan up to 50cm.

Are vampire bats friendly? ›

Even though bat bites don't hurt, vampire bats can spread a disease called rabies. This can hurt farmers' livestock, especially cattle herds. However, vampire bats can actually be quite tame, and even friendly to humans.

What is the strongest bat animal? ›

It is one of the largest bat species in the world, weighing up to 1.4 kg (3.1 lb)—only the Indian and great flying fox can weigh more.
...
Giant golden-crowned flying fox
Order:Chiroptera
Family:Pteropodidae
Genus:Acerodon
Species:A. jubatus
14 more rows

Which is the best bat? ›

Full list of best cricket bats in India
S.NBest cricket batsWood
1New balance BURNKashmir Willow
2SG Cobra XtremeEnglish Willow
3New Balance CW DC 480Kashmir Willow
4SG Scorer ClassicKashmir Willow
9 more rows
Nov 30, 2019

Can I drink blood? ›

Drinking animal blood is generally safe in small quantities. Chowing down on a rare steak or a blood sausage link usually won't have any ill effects. But ingesting animal blood in large quantities could be dangerous, especially if the blood wasn't collected in a hygienic way.

What kind of bats drink blood? ›

Vampire bats are sanguivores, organisms that feed upon the blood of other animals. They are the only mammals that feed exclusively on blood. Despite horror-movie depictions, vampire bats very rarely bite humans to feed on their blood.

Do bats have blood? ›

Vampire bats, species of the subfamily Desmodontinae, are leaf-nosed bats found in Central and South America. Their food source is blood, a dietary trait called hematophagy.
...
Vampire bat
Order:Chiroptera
Family:Phyllostomidae
Subfamily:Desmodontinae Bonaparte, 1845
Genera
7 more rows

Why are bats so creepy? ›

Experts say that nocturnal animals are often associated with death and darkness. "They engage in mysterious activities in the dark and so they have been cloaked in superstition since ancient times,” Stanford University classics scholar Adrienne Mayor told National Geographic. And bats are particularly spooky.

When did giant vampire bats go extinct? ›

“Desmodus draculae was the last of the giant flying mammals. It became extinct during the colonial period, around 1820, possibly as a consequence from the Little Ice Age,” the researchers said.

Why are bats weird? ›

The strangely intricate wrinkles and grooves around the nostrils of many bats may help them “see” in the dark by enabling them to use their sonar in different ways. Bats are famous for their ability navigate and hunt by listening to the echoes of their ultrasonic calls. This is known as echolocation.

What is the creepiest Pokemon? ›

Out of all 898 Pokémon, Malamar would be the only one that could definitively and undeniably be considered evil. It memorably appeared in the anime, where it attempted to control the world and exhibited terrifying behavior.

What is the scariest thing alive? ›

Based on our research, here are the ten creepiest animals in the world:
  • Sea Squirt.
  • Sea Snake.
  • Northern Short-Tailed Shrew.
  • GoblinShark.
  • Blobfish.
  • Shoebill Stork.
  • Aye Aye.
  • Goliath Bird-Eating Tarantula.
Dec 24, 2021

What animal is not afraid of fire? ›

On the other hand, pets like cats, dogs, horses or live stock animals can be trained to be around fire without showing any signs of fear. Because they are socialised to not fear fire, they do not fear it.

What animal is stupidest? ›

1- Sloths. Sloths are the slowest and dumbest animals out there. They spend most of their time sleeping on the tree branches, but they never poop on the trees. They descend once a week to do their business on the ground, and then go back up.

What is the shortest animal name? ›

  • 4 letters. Restoration of Yi qi (4 letters) Ia io Thomas, 1902 – Family Vespertilionidae. ...
  • 5 letters. Drawing of Foa fo (5 letters) Aha ha Menke, 1977 – Family Crabronidae. ...
  • 6 letters. Skull of Beg tse (6 letters) Loa loa (6 letters) ...
  • 7 letters. Copa kei (7 letters) Doto kya (7 letters)

What is the 2nd ugliest animal in the world? ›

World's ugliest animals
  • The naked mole-rat. This rat has little use for hair or for eyes. ...
  • The blobfish. What is that? ...
  • The axolotl. Imagine never growing up! ...
  • Titicaca scrotum frog. ...
  • The proboscis monkey. ...
  • The kakapo. ...
  • The dugong.
Sep 19, 2014

Is there a flying fox? ›

Flying foxes belong to the megabats. There are about 60 species of flying foxes worldwide. These occur in the warm tropical and subtropical climates of countries such as Madagascar, India, New Guinea, Malaysia and Australia. All flying foxes are fruit bats, but not all fruit bats are flying foxes.

Do bats suck blood? ›

They don't suck blood.

In reality, they lap it up like a cat. Vampire bats – if successful in their hunt – make a painless incision near an artery using their sharp teeth and then let the blood trickle out into a pool before licking it up.

How big is the smallest bat? ›

The bumblebee bat is the smallest mammal in the world! This tiny bat weighs less than 2 grams, its body is about the size of a large bumblebee, giving it the common name “bumblebee bat”.

What is bat poop called? ›

guano, accumulated excrement and remains of birds, bats, and seals, valued as fertilizer. Bird guano comes mainly from islands off the coasts of Peru, Baja (Lower) California, and Africa heavily populated by cormorants, pelicans, and gannets. Bat guano is found in caves throughout the world.

What does bat pee look like? ›

Bat urine looks like a milky patch with a downward flowing streak; the milky patch appears because of a high concentration of uric acid. Do you know bat urine is strong enough to corrode metal and wear out wooden fibers?

Is bat poop toxic? ›

The problem begins when dried bat guano is disturbed and "bat guano dust" is created in an attic. When these microscopic spores from the dried bat guano are inhaled by humans they can cause a serious respiratory disease called histoplasmosis*.

Are bats evil? ›

Myths and legends frequently associate bats with darkness and evil. This negative attitude towards bats is thought to stem from the difficulty many people find in comprehending their “unusual” physical form.

Is bat urine toxic to humans? ›

Bat urine. The main concern with bat urine does not relate to human health but the fact it contains high concentrations of uric acid which can corrode metal. Bat urine also causes etching of polished surfaces and staining of light-coloured fabric and porous stone such as marble and alabaster.

Are bats tasty? ›

The 1999 version of The Oxford Companion to Food states that the flavor of fruit bats is similar to that of chicken, and that they are "clean animals living exclusively on fruit". Bats are prepared in several manners, such as grilled, barbecued, deep fried, cooked in stews and in stir frys.

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