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Big Brown Bat Photograph

Big Brown Bat

09.09.2008 - This is a detail photograph of a Big Brown Bat (Eptesicus fuscus). The Big Brown is a common bat involved in nuisance wildlife removal, because like the Little Brown Bat, it's a colonizing mammal that likes to live in buildings.  It looks fairly similar to the Little Brown Bat, except it's ...bigger.  It has a wingspan of maybe 10 inches and it weighs 5/8 oz, which while small, is quite a bit larger than your average colonizing bat.

I don't deal with Big Brown Bats here in Florida.  I deal with the Freetails and the Evening Bats.  The Big Brown is more common up north.  This photo was sent to me by my friend Sean, who operates his own wildlife removal business in Seattle.  It's a high quality picture, so I'm posting it here.

Even though I don't personally deal with Big Brown Bats, it's my understanding that the colony sizes are generally smaller than those of other species.  A colony might consist of ten to twenty members, whereas the Little Browns or Freetails can form colonies of thousands of members.

Regardless of colony size, the behavior is the same.  They form maternity colonies of females, they give birth to young in the summer, they leave their roost at night to catch insects on the wing, and sleep during the day.  They are controlled via exclusion methods - one-way removal devices that let them fly out but not fly back in.  They are valuable creatures that should not be killed.

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Biology of Big Brown Bat - The big brown bats are 110-130 mm length. The females are larger than the males and they have strong sharp teeth. Their teeth are used to bite preys especially when they catch using mouth. Thus, despite the size of its prey, they are able to capture them. The big brown bat has dark brown color with a slight red shade on their skins. Their bottom part is light brown and their wings, tail, ears and face are dark black.

The big brown bats live in Nearctic region and neotropical region. The southern Canada and United States are also their habitats. Along the mountain chain of Andean and some islands include Hispaniola, cuba, Jamaica and Puerto rico.

The habitats for big brown bats are the rural areas or the towns. The bats can blend in human habitats such as the hollows of the trees, stadiums, churches and even barns. The big brown bats also inhabit the streams like rivers and forests. They can adapt to the weather and the environment.

Bats can survive until 19 years. They are wild animals and most of the males live longer. If the bats don’t have enough fat during their hibernation, they will surely die in winter. The big brown bats are taken care by the mothers in large groups. They are recognized by the mothers and mothers usually lick the baby before they start to nurse them.

To capture their preys, bats use echolocation. They make calls by opening their mouths and also calculate the distance between the call and the length. This is how they have precise calculation when attacking and hunting the preys. They listen to echoes and they can determine their distance from the object. They use this method also when they are flying. When big bat is close to the prey, they can increase the rate.

Baby brown bats may separate from the mothers. This is why they squeak continually to seek their mother. The distance is far enough for the squeak to be heard – up to 30 feet. The squeak is part of the way they communicate. Moreover, the squeak can help the mother to note their location and find them. Or take them somewhere safe.

Big brown bats feed on beetles and other insects. They use their teeth to chew hard surfaces like the shells of insects. The warm month is the perfect roost for these bats to catch preys because they have to hibernate during the winter. When digesting their meals, they hang themselves upside down before returning to capture the preys. Snakes and raccoon eat bats and sometimes the owl catch them when they fly.

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