Pennsylvania bats are the only Pennsylvania mammals that fly in the state. Their Pennsylvania wings are thin membranes of skin stretched from fore to hind legs, and from hind legs to tail. The name of their Pennsylvania species order is the Chiroptera, which means “hand-winged.” Their long, slender Pennsylvania finger bones act as wing struts, stretching the skin taut for flying; closed, they fold the wings alongside the body.
Pennsylvania bats range in size from the Pennsylvania hoary bat (length, 5.1-5.9 inches; wingspread, 14.6-16.4 inches; weight, 0.88-1.58 ounces) to the Pennsylvania pygmy bat, or pipistrelle (length, 2.9-3.5 inches; wingspread, 8.1-10.1 inches; weight, 0.14-0.25 ounces). Eleven Pennsylvania species of bats occur in the state of Pennsylvania.
All Pennsylvania bats belong to family Pennsylvania Vespertilionidae, and are also known as evening bats or common bats. They are Pennsylvania insect eaters, taking prey on the wing. Often Pennsylvania bats feed over water, and some species occasionally land and seize prey on the ground. A Pennsylvania bat consumes up to 25 percent of its weight at a single feeding.
Pennsylvania eyes of the Pennsylvania bats are relatively small, but their ears are large and well developed. Unique adaptations help Pennsylvania bats fly and catch prey in total darkness. While in flight, a Pennsylvania bat utters a series of high-pitched squeaks (so high, in fact, they are almost always inaudible to humans), which echo off nearby objects-bushes, fences, branches, insects-and bounce back to the bat’s ears. Split-second reflexes help the Pennsylvania creature change flight direction to dodge obstructions or intercept prey.
A Pennsylvania bat will use its mouth to scoop a small insect out of the air. A larger insect is often disabled with a quick bite, cradled in a basket formed by the wings and tail, and carried to the ground or to a perch for eating. If a Pennsylvania insect takes last second evasive action, the bat may flick out a wing, nab its prey, and draw the insect back to its mouth. Bats have sharp teeth to chew their food into tiny, easily digested pieces.