Where can vampire bats be found?


Quick Answer

The vampire bat is native to North, Central and South America, from Mexico to Argentina. There is only one positive confirmation of a vampire bat sighting in the United States.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

The vampire bat belongs to the family Phyllostomidae, the leaf-nosed bat. There are three extant species of vampire bat: common, white-winged and hairy-legged. The common vampire bat has the largest range of the three species, extending from northern Mexico to Argentina, Chile and Uruguay in the south. The white-winged vampire bat has a similar range to the common but is not present in western Mexico or the Yucatan. The hairy-legged vampire bat is also absent from western Mexico but does have a presence in the Yucatan. There is documentation of a single hairy-legged vampire bat sighting in southern Texas in 1967.

Vampire bats occupy both humid and arid habitats, but warm, humid climates are preferred.

These bats are extremely social animals, sometimes forming colonies of over 100 animals. Despite a bad reputation, vampire bats form strong social bonds with other colony members. They are reciprocally altruistic, regurgitating food for hungry individuals and lactating females, and even adopting orphaned pups. Common vampire bats sometimes become a nuisance by feeding on livestock, but both the white-winged and hairy-legged vampires are avian specialists that only prey upon birds.

Learn more about Bats

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Can bats see?

    A: All bats can see. Microbat species generally have poorly developed eyes and poor visual acuity, but most megabat species have excellent eyesight and even s... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How many kinds of bats are there?

    A: There are at least 925 different kinds of bats worldwide. Within the population of mammals, bats are second only to rodents. Bats account for about one-fif... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What do bats look like?

    A: Bats are brown, red, tan, grey or black and range in size from 2 1/2 to 7 inches long. A bat's wingspan ranges from 8 to 23 inches. Bats possess large ears... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How much do bats weigh?

    A: The western pipistrelle bat is the smallest known species of bat in the United States, and it weighs less than a penny, while the greater mastiff bat is th... Full Answer >
    Filed Under: