Humans have been fascinated with bats since the ancient times. Bats are the only mammals naturally capable of flying. While most bats prey on insects, several species sustain themselves with blood of other animals - this feature combined with bats' amazing flying abilities and nocturnal way of life earned them numerous folklore legends, where bats are depicted as vampires who often shapeshift into bats (e.g. count Dracula). Contrary to the old wives' tale that bats entangle themselves in people's hair, a bat is a friendly animal who does not harm humans, but eats up to 3000 mosquitos, bugs, and moths per night, thus "cleaning" your backyard and making your life more comfortable. Some people even install bat houses for this purpose.
Photoshop bats any way you wish. Examples may include merging bats with other animals or humans, including them into paintings, or showing what happens if bats rule the world. These are just some ideas.
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If there's a living thing which seems to be generated by the forces of darkness, then it should be a bat. With membranous wings and sinister face, the bats appear to be descendants of monstrous union of bird and rodents. In human consciousness, the opinion has got consolidated from the earliest times, that the bats are abominable and repugnant (and the bats feed on human blood) and bats possess supernatural qualities of phantoms (can take shape of a human). It is not surprising, that the bats became integral attribute of innumerable awful histories and horror films.
This conception however is creation of folklore, balky myth and terrible misunderstanding. Bat, according to the scientists, is one of the most perfect and probably, most miraculous creation of nature.
Judge for yourself... Majority of bats live in caves colonized by more than a million bats or live on trees but some types exist, which live in webs, built from foliage. Bats are born with weight, equaling to one fourth weight of the mother bat – just imagine a mother bat with weight of 60 kgs giving birth to an off-spring (pup) weighing 15kgs.
Majority of mammalians cease to feed the off-springs with milk when the off-spring have 40% sizes of the elder but the bats feed the pups till the pups are fully grown. Reason: Pups require additional time so that their wings reach the size, necessary for flying.
Echolocation system of the bats is such good that the bats can hear the sounds of insects, changes in air flow, caused by the vibration of wings of insects and even the ripples on surface of ponds, caused by tiny stink fish.
Since the bats cannot ensure required quantity of food entire year, the bats found a peculiar food preservation method. When the bats hunt, the bats often fall into stupor condition, in which the substance exchange is significantly reduced and the body temperature (usual cave temperatures - 43С) is lowered upto ambient temperature. In winters, the bats can freeze upto the icicle condition.
Fossil findings witness that the bats hovered in skies as long as 55 millions years back. The ancient bats were completely similar to the modern bats. Even though outsiders consider that the bats, above all, resemble rodents but in fact, their nearest relatives are primates. World of modern bats is unbelievably varied; approximately 1000 bat species exist worldwide, which accumulates to one-fourth of existing mammals. Many bats eat inspects but bat species exist, which feed on fruits, nectar and pollen. Very few bats eat fish, frogs and rodents and of course, drink blood. But bat-vampires, which are found in Latin America, drink blood from grazing cattle and horses and from non-sleeping human beings in spite of all the legends. Incidentally, vampires usually attack from the skies but from the earth – slowly creep towards the grazing cow, climb onto the leg upto the hoof, make a small incision and lick the blood, running down from the wound. Saliva of bats contains anticoagulants and obstructs the blood coagulation. For one time, a bat vampire can drink only a teaspoon of blood.
Bats play an important role in maintaining the ecological balance on the planet. Firstly, the bats protect harvest from insects. One small brown bat can very quickly clear off the yard from troublesome mosquitoes, eating almost 600 mosquitoes in an hour.
Even though folk superstition says that the bats are blind, but the bats can see whereas some, for example, Asiatic fruit bats, can boast of unusually sharp night vision, which helps the bats to find the food. But majority of bats trust more on echolocation system than on the eyes. By emitting ultrahigh frequency sound signals, approximately 10 times per second, they receive the sound waves, reflected from the item. According to the time delay of the reflected signal and its angle, bats can identify the position of target. This scanning is so accurate that, it allows the bats to distinguish the scales on wings of a moth and differentiate the pebbles from beetles. Whereas the data processing is done by brain with lightning speed in microseconds – bat can hunt and eat two insects in one second.
And one more thing: Majority of bats produce peculiar sweetish musky odor, which, probable is familiar to all – the way it smells in old churches. Old churches – favorite habitation spots of bats: Its calm and the entire week is quiet and always empty in the nights.
Bats hang upside down not due to bad blood circulation and not because of bad sense of equilibrium – simply the hind legs, which help the bats in flying, are not strong enough to support the entire body weight. Even if they try to stand on their feet, they simply topple over. Hanging upside down is also a great way to hide from danger. Bats have a unique physiological adaptation that lets them hang this way without exerting any energy. To hang upside down, a bat flies into position, pulls its claws open with other muscles and finds a surface to grip.