Galapagos Hoary Bat

The Hoary Bat (Lasiurus cinereus) is a ‘hairy-tailed bat’ that is resident on the Galapagos Islands. It is also the largest bat normally found in Canada.The Hoary Bat averages 13 to 14.5 centimetres (5 to 5.7 inches) long with a 40 centimetre (15.7 inches) wingspan and a weight of 26 grams (0.9 ounces). Its coat is of a dark brown colour and there is silver frosting on the animals back. With the major exception of the underside of the wing most of the bat is covered in fur.

The Hoary Bat normally roosts alone in trees but on occasions has been seen in caves with other bats. It prefers woodland, mainly coniferous forests but hunts over open areas or lakes. The Hoary Bat as well as the Galapagos Red Bat is an insectivore that flies all around but is larger and with a beautiful red fur with white tips. These bats hunt alone and their main food source are moths but they will also eat dragonflies.

The reproductive cycle of the hoary bat is not yet fully known but it is thought that they mate in August with birth occurring in June of the following year.

The Hoary Bat is thought to have a gestation period of only 40 days and that Mammalian embryonic diapause (delayed implantation) may play a role. Litters range from 1 to 4 and the young spend about one month with the mother before being able to fend for themselves.

The Hoary Bat is migratory and may travel as far south as the southern United States or Bermuda. Occasionally the bat will roost inside shipping crates and this may account for reports of them being observed above the Arctic Circle.