These Whispering, Walking Bats Are Onto Something | Deep Look


Slicing through the shadows… Scanning for prey hidden under a cloak of
darkness… Bats are masters of the night sky, thanks
to their twin superpowers: flight and echolocation, using sound waves to find prey. So, what the heck is this one doing… It’s hunting on the ground – and not flying. Kind of an undignified way to catch a meal,
isn’t it, I mean for a bat? Turns out echolocation — that natural sonar
bats use — isn’t the killer technique you’d think. Like, it’s not actually that SNEAKY. We can’t hear the frequency that bats put
out, but to a moth, it’s louder than a scream…more like a jet taking off. It’s kind of a dead giveaway. And some prey have found ways to fight back. This tiger moth has loaded up on a diet of
toxic plants that make him disgusting to eat. A fact he broadcasts with warning clicks from
an organ called a tymbal, the same one cicadas use to sing. Bats learn as pups to stay away. And these hawk moths can scramble bat sonar
by emitting clicks from their genitals. It’s a dogfight…that bats are starting
to lose. That’s why some, like this pallid bat, are
changing the game. She still echolocates, but only to navigate. And she keeps the volume low. She’s a whispering bat. When it’s time to hunt, she goes into stealth
mode… Her ears point down, where scorpions and crickets
are milling in the loose earth, and she listens… Look at those ears again… They’re huge, relative to her tiny skull… They do a great job of capturing and amplifying
sound, especially the low-pitched noises of scurrying prey. And see that funny flap? It’s called the tragus. They provide extra information about where
a sound is coming from. We have them too, but in a bat they’re way
bigger. And the bat has a final card to play here…she’s
immune to scorpion venom, but the sting rattles her a little. It’s not as graceful as the high-flying
aerobatics – but hey, it works. A lot of people really don’t like bats. But they do us a favor by eating tons of mosquitoes. Watch our video about how mosquitoes use the
six separate to suck your blood. And speaking of blood suckers, if you do like
bats, watch this video about vampire bats from our friends at NPR Skunk Bear. And thanks for watching Deep Look.

100 thoughts on “These Whispering, Walking Bats Are Onto Something | Deep Look

  1. Bats: *Don't scream at their prey when hunting anymore*
    Moths, Crickets, and Scorpions: "Those bats are up to something…"

  2. I am a huge fan of nature documentaries and have been reading, watching, looking up out of curiosity and learning about all sorts of ecological and animal related interesting bits since I was a kid – it's now rare that I come across an educational nature piece that tells me something I had not already seen or heard or read. I just watched maybe 5 of your videos and learned something new and fascinating in each of them! The backwards facing barbs on porcupine quills and how it is being investigated to be replicated in surgical equipment? The fact that the wax on the quill is not only stinky but also antibacterial? The internal structure of a rattlesnake's rattle! We've vaccinated wild frogs! Bugs are evolving to fight back against bats! Amazing. I'm having a blast. Thank you for putting all of this information I have ACTUALLY not seen before up here, it is awesome! 😀

  3. I caught a bat just a few days ago, it flew into the Ross store and people were screaming and throwing things at it. I managed to catch it and let it go but not before it bit me. I was worried until I read that you have only a 1% chance getting rabies from a bat.

  4. The only thing we can repay this channel for the good quality of the videos is to subscribe and like their post anddd…comment

  5. Chinese will eat these too. I'm glad the new virus is killing them. But it's not fast enough. They purposely travel with the virus so other countries help them solve the problem they start.

  6. Bats are actually friends of humans. I like them. And I like batman too. Bats are Batmans.

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