Do Bats Drink Water – How?

Bats are a highly interesting group of animals. Bats are mammals but it is rare to sight them drinking water. But this is just because of the manner in which they drink water. Bats drink water as well as blood (for the vampire species among them). They also drink a variety of other liquids for different purposes.

Bats actually drink a lot of water from any available source both day and night. Their quest to take sufficient volumes of water has resulted in the death of many bats in pools and ponds near residential homes. Bats love water. The females among them have more need for water due to lactation as they nurse their young. Lactating mothers form the greater number of bats seen at night near pools. They often drink several times during the night.

The liquid refreshment of bats does not end with water. They also get a good dose of liquids from the insects they prey on. And nectar from flowers and plants are not left out.

How do bats drink? Bats take their water while in flight and at a very fast speed. Many ponds in the wild are infested with active predators, who lurk stealthily around the waters. For the bats to avoid predation at the water bodies, they drink while on the air. However, their legs are not adapted to land or stand on water.

They would take a few drops as they swoop down on the water, and off they go. Bats do this repeatedly until they have had their fill. Their water intake is at its peak when they emerge from their roost and getting set for the night’s insect hunting. They do not taste salty water.

Some other bats like the flying fox or fruit bat, would gently skim the water's surface, and then find a nearby safe spot to land so they can lick water from their chest fur.

This means that if there is any obstruction in the water body or presence of foreign bodies, the swooping bat could get trapped and/or die in the water.

It has been discovered that bats have the innate ability to detect open water. They do this through echolocation. While in flight, they would emit high frequency sounds and locates water surfaces by the echo and reflection of the sound that they can hear. Simply, they use echolocation via waves to locate objects that may be invisible to them or at a distance. The bat is very technical in its drinking process; and it only makes use of the tongue.

Read more interesting bat facts:
How Many Bugs per Night Do Bats Eat
Do Bats Avoid Lights
Do Bats Migrate
Can Bats Walk On The Ground

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