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Eastern pipistrelle - Pipistrellus subflavus

The Eastern pipistrelle is one of the 15 species of bats found in Tennessee. It is also one of the smallest bats in the east growing up to 3.5" long with a wingspan of up to 10" and they can weigh up to 1/4 of an ounce.

Mostly found roosting under loose bark or in the cavity of a tree. However, they will also be found in buildings. In the winter time they either hibernate living off of stored fat, or they migrate to warmer climates where food is still available.

Eastern pipistrelles feed on insects, especially leafhoppers, plant hoppers, moths, beetles, and flies. Usually hunting above the tree canopy they are one of the first bats to emerge in the evening. They find their food using echolocation.  

Bats are the only members of the mammal family that can fly. Like all mammals they have fur and are warm blooded. They also give live birth and produce milk for their babies. Bats are in the scientific order Chiroptera (kie-rop-ter-a), which means 'hand-wing' and are known to live from 10 to 32 years.

While most people generally think of bats living in caves, in the summer time bats actually live behind bark, in tree's, jungles, and man made structures such as buildings, barns, and bridges. 

Bats provide an extremely important service for the environment in that they eat large quantities insects. In fact some bats can eat as many as 1,200 insects in one hour. Since some insects such as misquotes carry diseases including the West Nile Virus and other insects like Cucumber Beatles and moths can cause severe crop damage, bats are doing humans a huge favor as well.

Bat Facts:

• There are more than 1,100 bat species.
• 70% of bats are insectivores.
• Bats make up almost 25% of all mammal species.
• a single brown bat can catch more than 1,200 insects per hour


Related Links & Resources:
Rafinesque’s Big-eared Bat Study Marks Favored Habitats
Indiana Bat Tests Positive For White-nosed Fungus
Big Brown Bat
White-nose Syndrome

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