Where Is My Bat Signal?

A new week, a new update on our bat adventures! How many bats will we see with the cooler weather? {that changed quickly and the weather got hot again near the end of the week}

Tuesday, July 23rd, 10:30ish pm.

We haven’t been able to get out last night or tonight. Our schedules wouldn’t allow it, however, when I got home, just as I settled into the couch, we heard a bat chirping outside! It sounded like this — https://www.futurity.org/bats-brains-sounds-1110342-2/

Type of bats: Big Brown Bat
No. Mosquito bites: 0

Wednesday, July 24th, dusk.

Tonight was a slow bat night. We caught some chirps, but didn’t get anymore than that. I found that with the cooler, breezy night, I wasn’t seeing many bugs. Bats eat their weight in bugs and they may have been feeding closer to where the bugs are more active. Possibly closer to Grenadier Pond. One night I will test out this theory.

Here is a link with information on bat feeding habits. https://www.batworlds.com/bat-feeding/

Type of bats: Big Brown Bat?
No. Mosquito bites: 0

Saturday, July 27th, 8:00 pm

I haven’t felt well for the last few days. I seem to be fighting off a cold. Today I needed to go for a walk and am glad I did. We decided to walk through High Park and wholly Batman there were a lot of bats out! It makes sense as there were a lot of bugs aka flying vampires. Damn mosquitos. The best part was that it was still light enough out that we could make out the types of bats we were seeing.

Tonight we wandered the west side of the park. I wanted to be closer to Grenadier Pond, but the mosquitos were to thick so we went to the top of the hill, and we were not disappointed. We saw both small brown bats and large brown bats. They were also flying very low. We then wandered over by the pool and there seemed to be a huge feast of bugs over there, we were picking up multiple bats at a time on the bat detector. It was a really great night for observing bats.

If I had a bat detector as a kid, my parents would never have been able to get me to come in at night.

For those wondering how bats feed, here is another link on Echolocation — https://askabiologist.asu.edu/echolocation

Type of bats: Big Brown Bat, Little Brown Bat
No. Mosquito bites: 3

Sunday, July 28th, dusk

Tonight was our best night yet! When we first got to the park, we started at the north end. We entered the park shortly after 8 pm, which was too early, but knew we would be at the south end by dusk. As we approached the Old Mill bridge along the Humber River we were in for a treat. There were at least two, possibly three bats flying near us and when a I say near us, they were swooping by just a few feet from us. They were so close we could hear them chirping without the bat detector! When we listened to the bat detector we could definitely hear a few bats at a time. If we weren’t getting eaten alive by mosquitos we would have stayed much longer.

As we were leaving the park at the south end we saw some more bats. They were also swooping quite low and close to use. One thing I noticed about the bats here is they were flying in a large continuous circle why they fed. Did you know bats fly with their mouths open? Makes sense.

To find out more about the bats of Toronto and other wildlife, please click here!

Type of bats: Big Brown Bat
No. Mosquito bites: 6, but it could be more.

Important: Do not handle bats. They can carry the rabies virus. Only those who have been properly vaccinated and have knowledge of bats should be handling them. If you find a bat in your home call a bat rescue. Do not call an exterminator, call a rescue. Bats are important for our environment. I have links below for rescues.

Types of bats in Ontario: https://onnaturemagazine.com/bat-guide.html
High Park Nature Centre: https://www.highparknature.org/wiki/wiki.php?n=Mammals.Bats
Bat rescues: http://www.ontariowildliferescue.ca/wildlifecentres/?care=bat

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