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Mexican Long-nosed Bat Leptonycteris nivalis


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Mexican Long-nosed Bat
credit: FWS

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Family: Phyllostomidae, New World Fruit Bats view all from this family

Description The only leaf-nosed bat occurring in Texas, this species may overlap with the Lesser Long-nosed Bat in New Mexico, where it differs by being larger, with grayish fur, a wider tail membrane and shorter wings. Forearm 56-60mm.

Dimensions 76-88mm, no tail, 18-30g

Endangered Status The Mexican Long-nosed Bat is on the U.S. Endangered Species List. It is classified as endangered in New Mexico and Texas. This bat has suffered from human disturbance and alterations of the caves and mines where it roosts, as well as the general habitat degradation that accompanies human settlement and development of a region. There may have been a decline in the availability some of the plants this bat feeds on both in its Mexico and U.S. home ranges as well as along migration routes.

Warning Bats are susceptible to rabies, a serious viral disease that results in death if untreated. Rabid bats rarely attack humans or other animals, but bats found lying on the ground may be rabid. Never touch or pick up any bat. Stay away from any animal that seems to be acting strangely and report it to animal-control officers. If you are bitten by a possibly rabid animal, you must immediately consult a doctor for a series of injections; there is no cure once symptoms emerge.

Habitat Canyons & caves, Forests & woodlands

Range Texas

Discussion Emory Peak Cave in Big Bend National Park has housed as many as 10,000 of these bats in mid-summer. The Mexican Long-nosed Bat is classified as an Endangered species; its migratory movements, specialized feeding, and roosting habits make it a conservation risk.