Bats belong to the order Chiroptera (and therefore are not flying rodents.) meaning “hand wing.” They are the only mammals capable of true flight, as opposed to flying squirrels that really just glide and are not able to produce lift. There are 16 species of bats in Wyoming: all are insectivores and most specialize in feeding on moths or beetles. Bats generally emerge from their day roost in the twilight just after sunset, grab a quick drink of water on the fly, and then forage for an hour or two before returning to their retreat for the rest of the night. Some bats overwinter in Wyoming and others fly south to colonies in warmer areas. Computer recording hardware and software applications are available to capture echolocation “voice prints” and these can be used identify bats to species while they are in flight.
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