Bat Species in New Jersey
We are lucky enough to have nine native bat species that make their home here in New Jersey. Six species call New Jersey home year-round: the little brown bat, big brown bat, northern long-eared bat (northern myotis), Indiana bat, eastern small-footed myotis, and tricolored bat (formally eastern pipistrelle). These species can be found living around the state in warmer months, but come early fall will start to move to caves and abandoned mines to survive the cold winter months by hibernating in their hibernacula. A hibernaculum is a shelter or place occupied by a creature during winter by a dormant animal (a hibernation site). There is one main hibernaculum in New Jersey located at the Hibernia Mine in Morris County. However, three bat species -- the silver haired bat, hoary bat, and red bat -- are tree bats that are migratory and leave New Jersey for more southern states to find milder climates to avoid the cold.
Time to Eat!
Taking Time to Rest
|Little Brown Bat|
The only time bats usually land is when they are ready to roost. During the day, a natural roost can consist of cracks in rocks, small caves, and under tree bark, but sometimes manmade roosts, such as bat boxes and awnings of buildings, are used as well. Bats need to roost during the daytime to help keep a stabilized temperature as well as to protect themselves from predators. Most daytime roosts are inconspicuous and hard to locate with the exception of those that are manmade. Bats are famous for being able to hang upside down while roosting and have a special adaptation of a tendon in their toes that locks into place for a firm grip.
Bats, like humans, are mammals!
- Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey, http://www.conservewildlifenj.org/.
- White-Nose Syndrome Response Team, https://www.whitenosesyndrome.org/.