Wednesday, 18 January 2012

2 Days, 2 Bats.

Well, September last year was the time I had my last bat rescue call. That was until this week, when I got a call for the Pipistrelle on Monday and then a call to another injured bat, a Brown Long-ear on Tuesday.
Unfortunately, the poor little blighter didn't make it and due to a badly, open fractured wrist, which the vet agreed, would unlikely heal back properly and therefore would leave it handicapped. This little bat can live for up to 20-30 years and is a second most commonest bat and it wouldn't be fair to the animal to keep it as a one-armed/winged flightless captive for 20-30 years. Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures of the bat as I felt that when you're in that much pain, the last thing you would want is to be poked, prodded and have pictures taken of you when you're in that sort of agony.
So, let me tell you a little about this bat. As you can imagine it has rather long ears and it's brown. It is sometimes referred to as the whispering bat because it doesn't shout when it echolocates. It echolocates very quietly and will happily sit on a branch and listen out for a fluttering moth to pass by. Not a lot of people know this, but some moths, in a constant battle of arms against bats have evolved to hear echolocation and some can even echolocate themselves to throw a incoming bat off its tail. Well, when you have large effective ears like the Brown Long-ear, that can actually hear the footstep of a moth on a leaf, then you don't have to rely on echolocation so much and can therefore stealthily creep up on your prey without the prey knowing about it. Don't you just love evolution? I do.
So, the second bat makes it on the list even though (sadly) it didn't make it in life. As for photos, I happen to have another Brown Long-ear (one I prepared earlier) in my shed recovering from a traumatic ordeal last autumn. He's hibernating at the moment, but when he wakes up in spring I'll post the pictures of him here.
So here's the updated list with a Goldfinch coming in at 56. Which means I'm only 2 species ahead of schedule and need to spot one or more species tomorrow. Fingers X'd.


54 Common Pipistrelle Pipistrelle pipistrellus TM316481 16/01/2012
55 Brown Long-ear bat Plecotus auritus TM295335 17/01/2012
56 Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis TL724860 18/01/2012

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