Weekly Puzzler Answer #85

What thoughts did you have about last week’s puzzler? Movies around Halloween would have us believe ALL bats are vampires. But is there such a thing in the first place?

A fruit bat in Thailand

A fruit bat in Thailand

In the world there are more than 1300 species of bats. One quarter of all mammals are bats. Depending on the kind, bats might eat insects, fruit, nectar,and even fish, frogs and small rodents like mice…

And yes, blood. But of the 1300 different types of bats, only 3 feed on blood. And all of those live in Latin America. And unlike the movies where bats SUCK blood from their unknowing hosts, bats in the wild LAP up blood– like a kitten drinking milk– and only a small amount, usually not even waking the animal –usually cows and other livestock, as they feed.

Vampire bats are important for medical research. Their saliva contains a powerful anticoagulant that has been developed into a medication to help prevent strokes.

Once again, this shows how much we need bats! Check out the new puzzler–another one about bats.

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