Hoary bat Hoary bat

One of Wyoming's many bat species, the hoary bat is a member of the "vesper" bats (evening bats) and is named for the grizzled or "hoary" appearance of its fur.

Fun Critter Facts

- Hoary bats are found across Wyoming, and are the most widespread bat species in North America.  They are highly migratory, moving from northern latitudes in the summer to winter as far south as Central America. They are also found in South America and have a similar, but reversed migration on that continent. Hoary bats are the only endemic land mammals in Hawaii and one of only two species of endemic Hawaiian mammals period. The other one is the Hawaiian monk seal. 

- Unlike a number of bat species, hoary bats roost within the foliage of trees, typically on the edge of a clearing. They prefer to hang under good overhead cover of foliage, with open escape below. 

- Hoary bats are a solitary bat species, but may be observed in fairly large groups during spring or fall migration (which is the breeding season for this bat), which occurs in August.

- Hoary bats display "delayed implantation," and females that are bred in August do not pup until the following May or June. Young remain with the female for a period of about 33-34 days, when they begin flights and are weaned.  While on the roost, young cling to the mother, and remain at the roost during her nightly forays for insects.

Hoary bats feed almost exclusively on insects, especially moths.  They have been known to feed occasionally on other fare, including the much smaller eastern pipistrelle, another bat species.

- Hoary bats fall prey to a number of predators, especially hawks and owls. American kestrels and screech owls have both been observed feeding on this species, which they may catch on the wing.  

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