10 Scary Facts About Bats For Halloween

Happy Halloween!

The swooping, black bat is a common symbol of this holiday, and many people are terrified by the thought of encountering a bat at night.

Despite their spooky image, bats are far from terrifying. No matter what urban myths you’ve heard, bats really donít want anything to do with your hair. They aren’t flying rodents, donít build nests or breed like rabbits, and they don’t want to be trapped inside your house any more than you do.

In fact, the scariest thing about bats is how quickly they’re going extinct. That’s right, a deadly disease known as†white-nose syndrome (WNS) is devastating hibernating bats across the country.

First discovered back in 2006, WNS was named for the mysterious white fungus that appears on bats. WNS has killed more than 5.7 million bats in eastern North America. So far, WNS has led to a 99-percent drop in northern long-eared bat populations in the Northeast US, which is why the US Fish & Wildlife Service proposed to protect them as endangered just earlier this month.

Rather than being scary or dangerous, most bats perform an absolutely vital service for our ecosystem:†The thousands of insects they eat each night save farmers millions of dollars on insect control and crop damage.

Check out the infographic below to learn more scary facts about what’s happening to our bat populations, and then check out this page on the USFWS website for more busted bat myths.

bat infographic

Top image via andy_tyler

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Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson2 years ago


Yuliya Dalbunova
Yuliya Dalbunova2 years ago

Thank you for the article and a picture to go with it: these facts are not a common knowledge and need to be shared for more awareness.

Michael H.
Mike H.2 years ago

Thanks for posting this

Sylvie C.
sylvie C2 years ago

Love bats... thank you.

Jess No Fwd Plz K.
Jessica K.2 years ago

Sad to hear this. Every animal is vital to the ecosystem, and when it's affected, its niche is weakened as well as the rest of the web. Thanks.

A F.
A F.2 years ago

poor things. :(

sandra j.
sandra j.2 years ago


Cathleen K.
Cathleen K.2 years ago

When Mark Twain observed that travel 'is fatal to bigotry, ignorance and narrow mindedness', he was right, but he wasn't thinking about the flip side - the importation of molds and microbes non native to the home of the traveler which subsequently wreak havoc when brought back. WNS came to North America on the boots of a spelunker who had picked it up while caving in Eastern Europe. European bats have evolved to coexist with this mold; ours have not, and it's just destroying them. We have quarantines for the importation of a lot of plants, animals and agricultural products to prevent the spread of diseases, but how do you quarantine the clothing of tourists? We, the travelling public, must educate ourselves and exercise restraint and common sense.

Jonathan Smithsonian


Fi T.
Fi T.2 years ago

Treasure even the ugly