With all their association with vampires, bats are found to be interesting creatures. One of the many questions which surround the mystery of bats is whether they avoid light or not.
It is known that bats are nocturnal creatures. That means that they will stay in during the day and go out when it is dark. During daytime, when the light is so clear, the vision of bats is not good enough for them to be able to pick up predators. If bats come out during the day, they will be picked off very easily. Bats do not like light and they will avoid it as much as it is possible. They will not come out in the light unless they are really starving and they need to go out for food. The main reason why bats will avoid light is predator avoidance. As mentioned earlier, bats are not able to see clearly in light and they will be picked on easily.
However, the daylight is not the only light which affects bats. They are also affected by any bright light, including street lights. For example, woodland bat species will avoid all bright light at any cost, and as a result, they may go hungry or they may get picked off by animals like falcons and hawks. Even while foraging at night, this species will avoid lights even if that means that they will find less food and they will be exposed to other predators.
In a study done by Bristol University graduate student Emma Stone, it was found that at night, the number of bats which use a specific route will decrease if that route was planted with street lights. In case the bats were forced to go through another route, they may have to fly much longer to find what they need, they may be provided with less shelter, and they may be exposed to more attacks by other animals.
On the other hand, some bat species will approach lamps which emit ultraviolet light. The reason is that this light attracts insects, and the bats will come and feed on the insects. However, these bats are fast flying. They fly out in the open and they are not like the woodland bats that avoid light, fly slowly, and are vulnerable to predation.
In conclusion, each bat species can take different degrees of light emission. Some may avoid light completely, and others less. To protect bats, it may be necessary to redirect light from their routes.
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