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Northern Long-eared Bat Myotis septentrionalis is a small, insectivorous bat found in the eastern United States and Canada. Along the east coast, its range is thought to extend as far south as the Great Dismal Swamp in coastal Virginia.
A medium-sized bat, usually 89-102 mm in length with a wingspan of about 241 mm. This species is extremely similar to the little brown bat in pelage. Fur color is somewhat variable, but typically medium brown on the upperparts with lighter belly fur. The best character to distinguish the northern bat from similar species is the presence of a noticeably long, pointed tragus in the ear. All other species of Myotis have a short tragus that is blunt-tipped. The ears of this species are longer than other species of Myotis on average.
Northern bat feeds on flying insects,but also gleans prey from substrates . Gleaning bats use passive listening as well as echolocation to locate insects resting on leaves, tree trunks, or against buildings. Gleaning allows a broader diet, including insects that may be able to detect echolocation calls of aerial hawking bats.
Northern long-eared bats forage under the forest canopy, at small ponds or streams, along paths and roads, or at the forest edge.In initial foraging peak occurred during the first 2 h after sunset, corresponding to a sunset peak in insect activity.
Northern long-eared bats uses frequency modulated (FM) echolocation calls of a higher frequency (126â€“60 kHz), shorter duration (1.01 ms), broader bandwidth, and lower intensity (78 dB) than other Myotis species, which only aerial hawk . Calls exhibit a sharp FM sweep, which is almost linear over time . High-frequency, lowintensity Northern long-eared bats calls may be relatively inaudible to prey such as some moths and lacewings.
Life Cycle : Breeding takes place during the late summer and early fall during a behavioral phenomenon known as â€śswarming.â€ť At this time, large numbers of bats visit and congregate in a succession of caves just prior to hibernation. Although sperm is transferred to the female during copulation occurring in the fall, ovulation and fertilization of the egg are delayed until the females arouse from hibernation the following spring.
During the summer, females form maternity colonies, mostly in man-made structures, although some will roost in tree cavities or under the peeling bark of dead trees. Summer roosts are typically warm and relatively dark.
Like all bat species in Canada, the Northern Long-eared Bat feeds exclusively on insects. Myotis bats are generally insectivores, and their diet is limited only by the size of the insects they are capable of catching. Although moths and beetles make up the majority of their diet, mosquitos, black flies, and other noxious pests also are consumed. The disappearance of suitable food following killing frosts in the fall is the primary factor initiating hibernation.
Parasites and diseases probably have minimal impact in most insectivorous bat species. However, bats can become infected with rabies virus and thus pose a public health concern. Rabies virus can cause fatal infections in all warm-blooded mammals and birds and is a concern for public safety and livestock health throughout the world.
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