a bat really eat 1,000 mosquitoes in a single hour? Um, no. Well ,
but it ain't going to happen so please don't hold your breath. This
myth has been perpetuated by overly optimistic vendors misinterpreting
and exaggerating a study that found
"bats can eat up
to 600 mosquito sized
insects per hour" Extremely misleading at the very least since sadly
mosquitoes nor tiny mosquito sized insects are the preferred
the diet of any
known North American species of bat.
The good news is that
mosquitoes are still on the menu of numerous species of
bats including many that will inhabit artificial
roosts. (Psst, these bat houses I'm selling) Reliable research has
mosquitoes comprise approximately 1% of a typical bats diet.
A conservative 250
insects per hour will add up to over 2,000 'mosquito sized equivalents'
per night. Now
twenty mosquitoes sounds quite disappointing until
you consider that a maternity colony sized bat house can easily hold
well over 200 bats. 200 X 20 = 4,000 and now were back to
making a dent
in the mosquito population! Night after night all summer long.
Many bat house landlords have
reported a noticeable decrease in the number of mosquitoes and mosquito
bites in the first few
minutes after their bats emerge in the evening. I personally think the
bats catching a few quick snacks to
hold them until they fly to their nightly feeding grounds is the reason.
So until we find out for sure, let's all quit
exaggerating what these wonderful little critters can do and just
accept that "Bats Eat Bugs!"
all of them except this incredibly cute
fruit bat my
photographed in a zoo somewhere.
Thanks for visiting!