Eastern Red Bats are one of West Virginia's 14 bat species.
The Eastern Red Bat (Lasiurus Borealis) is native to West Virginia but is an uncommon bat and rare to see. They are tree dwelling bats that prefer roosting in trees and shrubs during the summer, and in colder months will overwinter within tree cavities. Easter Red Bats are solitary most of its life except during mating and migration. Residents of West Virginia generally do not encounter problems with this type of bat colonizing in attics of buildings.
These medium sized bats are 4-5 inches long and weigh less then a half ounce and females are larger than males. Fur color differ for males and females Males have reddish-brown fur while females are a more yellowish with a reddish color. These bats have long pointed wings, short rounded ears, long tail, patches of white along its shoulders and its tail is unfurred.
The range for these bats in the United States are mostly central and western stats and the southern two-thirds of Florida. These are migratory bats, they often times will migrate south during the winter, but little is known about migratory patterns of these bats. Red Bats will roost in tree canopies, and shrubs, but will seek shelter under leaves during cold. It is unlikely to encounter this type of bat in an attic or other structure.
Like most bats the Eastern Red Bat is insectivorous. Their diets consist mostly of moths, and beetles which consist of half their diet but also feed on flies and other insects. The are often seen foraging over roads and narrow streams. They feed for 1-2 hours after sunset but may intermittently feed until dawn.
Eastern Red Bats mate during late summer to fall but do not become pregnant right away, females will store the sperm over winter and become pregnant during the spring. Gestation will last 80-90 days, and twin pups will be born sometime between May and June. They will be weaned and learn to fly at four to six weeks and have an average life span of 12 years.
Information on other types of West Virginia Bats
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