Unlike many animals that are nocturnal, bats hunt almost blindly. Contrary to popular myth about their great night vision, they don’t see well in the dark and are forced to navigate in space using the mouth and ears. Sounds weird, but it’s true — they emit sound waves which are reflected from surrounding objects and captured their ears. This method of orientation is called echolocation and it is thanks to him that nocturnal predators can detect their victims.
Depending on the species, bats can feed on the blood of other animals and all sorts of vegetation, but most of them prefer insects. It is known that in an hour of hunting one individual can eat about 200 mosquitoes. However, they can’t get enough of some mosquitoes, so we try to find and eat more nutritious bugs and caterpillars. Finding them sometimes is a real challenge, because these insects are well camouflaged in the leaves of plants.
For a long time, scientists believed that bats have no chance for the detection of insects, sitting motionless in the leaves of the trees. The fact is that if the mouse fly to any sheet, right angle and echolocation sounds recorded from the sheet without any distortion caused by the insect’s body — in fact, the bugs become invisible to them. However, the new study revealed that predators are already well aware of this “acoustic camouflage” insects and fly up to the leaves at an angle. By this stratagem, the sound waves hurt the body insects and can let you know that the leaf of the tree definitely is something there.
Flying up to the leaves at a right angle, the bats are unable to detect prey
Scientists discovered this by conducting an experiment in which, with 541 different angles exposed to sound waves on the leaves of plants with insects without them. In the process, they caught the reflected waves and evaluated, under the influence of the angle at which insects are detected best. It was found that for a successful hunt bats have to fly up to the leaves at an angle from 42 to 78 degrees.
The most cunning animals
The next stage of the experiment confirmed that bats in 80% of cases do. When the scientists placed four bats in an aviary with a few artificial leaves, motionless dragonfly and multiple cameras, the raptors really flew to the leaf surface at angles in the aforementioned range.
This behavior of the bats was for the researchers quite a large opening. Now they believe that the stock of these amazing creatures there are many more tricks that help them to hunt even without a good view. Indeed, bats are wonderful creatures, because their bodies can withstand the infection of the Ebola virus and other deadly human diseases.
However, these winged predators millions are dying from another disease