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Eastern pipistrelle is the smallest of the Adirondack bats. Widespread across the eastern United States and southern Canada, south into Central America, extending west into the central Great Plains.
Length is approximately 2 inches. Hair is tri-colored: dark near skin, lighter in the mid-region and dark at the tip. Color ranges from reddish to light brown. Belly light. The Eastern Pipistrelle has a keeled calcar and has a tiny premolar behind itâ€™s canine tooth. This is unusual because most other bat species have two.Body length ranges from 3 1/8 â€“ 3 1/2 inches with the tail length making up approximately 1 3/8 â€“ 1 3/4 inches of the total measurement.
Eastern pipstrelles begin foraging early in the evening, and take small flying insects (leafhoppers, beetles, flies, moths, and ants) 4-10 mm in length over water, along forest edges, and over meadows and fields adjacent to trees. When feeding among insect swarms, this bat may catch 30 insects per minute, ingesting 3-4 g (0.11-0.14 oz) of food per hour.
Although information on the breeding locations and elevational range of this species is scant for the Adirondack Park, its presence in winter among caves and mines in the region suggests the eastern pipstrelle is a widespread species. Buildings, tree cavities and foliage, rock crevices as well as caves and mines, provide summer roosts. The flight of this species is slow, erratic, undulating, and fluttering; resembling a moth or butterfly. When on a direct course, the average speed is 18.7 km/h (11.6 mph). Eastern pipistrelles remain active at least as late as October
Life Cycle :The Eastern Pipistrelle is unique among bats in that females usually have twins. It is estimated that gestation lasts approximately 44 days. It is possible for females to store sperm during hibernation. They can delay ovulation until hibernation is over. Young feed on motherâ€™s milk. Females and young form maternity colonies of approximately 30-35 individuals.
Mating takes place in the fall. They have been observed copulating as late as November. Both males and females have been observed roosting together as early as August, however. During the period from March to August adult males and females usually occupy separate roosts. Data suggest that the sperm may remain viable in the vaginal tract of the female until spring, when ovulation occurs (in March or April) and fertilization of the ova takes place. However, copulation in the spring also has been observed.
The exact period of gestation is not known, but it probably does not begin until the bats have left their winter quarters. The young, usually two in number, are born from May to July. They grow rapidly and when about 3 weeks old are able to take care of themselves.
Eastern pipistrelle Bats
These colonies are sometimes found in buildings, but are most often in hollow trees. Young are altricial, taking approximately one year to reach sexual maturity. For young bats, the first few weeks are most critical. Since they are unable to fly at this age, it is common for them to fall to the floor of their hibernacula and become food for other creatures. This bat mates in the fall.
Impacts of Eastern Pipistrelles on Humans: These bats help to control insect populations. It is not uncommon for these bats to eat thousands of insects per night. Some people find bats in general to be somewhat of a nuisance. Bats sometime nest in homes, which causes some aggravation. People have concerns about bats getting caught in their hair and others worry about catching rabies. While bats can carry this disease.
Eastern pipistrelle bats
We know that they are important insect predators and, along with other bats, help keep many insect populations in check, including many agricultural pests. We canâ€™t anticipate the ramifications to the ecosystem of losing the Indiana bat. For that reason as well as simple ethical reasons â€” like the fact that we caused the decline of this species.
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