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Do bats hibernate?

The bat lives a rather unusual life in comparison to virtually every other kind of mammal. It starts with the fact that they are the only true flying animal that is a mammal, and they spend all of their sleeping hours hanging upside down from a tree, cave ceiling, or other structure that affords them the opportunity to sleep peacefully.

Because of their poor eyesight, these animals are nocturnal, using their incredible sense of hearing and smell to be able to navigate their way in the dark hours while also being able to locate food or stay away from potential predators. They are very special kinds of animals in so many ways.

One thing you may not be familiar with related to bats is the fact that they live in large colonies. In fact, in some cave areas in the northern part of Mexico and in the southern part of the United States there have been colonies of bats that have reached millions in terms of their population. It is remarkable how these creatures are able to survive in such large groups, using their natural instincts and their communication to be able to create a fully functioning colony that ensures for the safety of one another as well as aids in the hunting and feeding process. Truly remarkable to say the least.

While bats are quite unique in many ways, one characteristic about them that is similar to animals such as the bear is the fact that bats hibernate during the wintertime. In fact, there unusual hibernation pattern is one that is a combination of hibernation and migration.

In many areas of the country, bats will head north during the spring and summer and set up colonies in areas like Minnesota, Wisconsin, and other northern areas. However, as the temperature begins to get colder these bats will migrate back to the southern states to set up their colony in an area where it is much warmer during the wintertime. If they were to remain in cold weather states during this time they would not survive, so they take the journey south to be able to live in these areas during the winter.

During the wintertime, the bats will then hibernate. They will usually locate some very isolated areas in caves, attach themselves to the ceiling of those caves, and take a winter long slumber and tell the temperature starts to rise again. Once it does, they begin their migration process once again and start the cycle all over.

It is a very interesting combination of bird and mammal behavior that helps to set the bat apart from many other animals. They need that hibernation period to be able to rejuvenate themselves to prepare for the spring and summer, and so they use this time so as not to be affected by the cold.

Bats continue to be a very odd form of mammals, and the manner in which they hibernate is just another example of this. They truly are a very unique kind of animal. Read more: Bat Control

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