Bats And Vampires, A Curious Association

Everyone remembers Dracula, the mythical character in Bram Stoker’s novel, who inspired countless movies.
Bats and vampires, a curious association

The oldest association between bats and vampires was made by literature and later by cinema. The animal known today as the vampire bat was involved and mutated.  He is considered an almost human being by countless movie studios, legends and mythologies.

Similarities between bats and vampires

Although  there are about 1,100 different species of bats, vampire bat species have become popular. Not only for its unattractive and particular predatory morphology, but also, and more importantly, for its blood-based diet.

This animal that  lives in hot and humid climates of the center and south of the American continent, has a short snout in the shape of a cone; he also has small ears and weighs no more than about 56 grams.

Fangs and wings: vampires?

One of the characteristics that has been used (and augmented) to compare bats and vampires is the fact that these animals have very sharp teeth.


The vampire bat uses its long wings not only to move. He also wraps them around to keep his body warm while he sleeps. A curious fact about this animal is that it not only flies, it  also walks and even runs.

This motor skill he uses to move and walk along his prey ‘s  body, making different holes that will allow him to feed through all of them.

bats and vampires

lives on liquid diet

Yes, there is a quality that has been used by literature and cinema to create the vampire’s personality : this animal’s eating habits, which place it among the most unique mammals.

Although there are other animals that live on blood, such as ticks, fleas, lice and some types of mosquitoes, the association of the bat with the vampire occurred because both are mammals. It also influences whether the bat feeds on the blood of other mammals, including humans. This blood diet is called hematophagy.

Legends and movies have led many to believe that the bat sucks the blood of its prey, however, this is not exactly the case; instead, they  use their teeth to make a wound and then lick off the blood.

Along with the ability to produce wounds,  while saliva numbs the area so the recipient doesn’t feel pain, it uses its tongue to lick the blood that comes out of this opening.

The vampire bat can feed for more than 30 minutes without the other mammal noticing. Due to the small amounts sucked, there is no danger of bleeding for the victim.

This  particular species  of bat cannot go more than two days without eating; that’s why the vampire bat can feed on blood regurgitated by another bat, which has been more successful in hunting.

Although hematophagia is your diet, it’s not entirely healthy. The amount of fluid can damage your kidneys and also cause you to become poisoned by excess iron and protein. In turn, blood carries hundreds of diseases that can certainly be acquired by those who consume it.

A group of researchers collected samples of bat droppings; in these samples, up to 280 of the bacterial species that cause disease in any other mammal were found.

Your role as a group animal

Even with all the myths surrounding the vampire bat, which associate it with an aggressive animal and which is nothing but legend,  in a group they are creatures capable of taking care of each other and from generation to generation.

In fact, they are caring animals: they even take care of others’ children if they are orphaned. Females usually give birth to only one offspring, very rarely two.

Yes, they can rest during the day with other species and in another colony, but they never get confused at night. There is an order between them and each individual occupies a place in the group’s social hierarchy.

Finally, the vampire bat has several natural predators that are also nocturnal; this is the case with eagles and hawks. There is another predator common to many animals: humans, who consider it a pest.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button