FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BATS
Are bats really blind?
No, there is no such thing as a blind bat, except babies when they are born and they open their eyes a day or two after birth. All bats can see, although some species can see better than others.
Are bats flying mice?
No – bats belong to a different group of mammals to rodents, bats are Chiroptera and are, actually, more directly related to humans and other primates than to rodents.
Will bats suck your blood?
Not in Ireland! Vampire bats are found in South and Central America. Irish bats are all insectivorous.
How many kinds of bats are there?
Around the world there have been over 1,200 species identified but in Ireland we have just 9 resident species.
What are bats good for?
In Ireland, all bats are insectivorous so they carry out an important job eating lots of insects that would otherwise be harmful or annoying to us humans, such as mosquitoes, midges, greenfly and the like. Around the world different species are responsible for controlling insect pests, spreading seeds in forests so new trees grow again, pollinating crop plants and much more.
Do bats get caught in your hair?
No! Bats have no interest in human hair. This myth may come from the fact that insects often swarm over people’s heads at dusk and bats swoop down to eat them. No one from Bat Conservation Ireland (with long or short hair), despite working at times near hundreds of bats in flight, has ever had a bat in their hair or met someone who has!
How many kinds of bats are there in Ireland?
At the last count there were 9 resident species and an additional 2 species have been recorded here but are thought to be vagrants rather than resident.