Typical bat behavior can give the impression that the flying mammals are blind.
Small and secretive, bats are nocturnal animals that wait until nighttime to come out and feed, thus remaining unfamiliar to many people who may believe the creatures to be sightless.
Furthermore, most bats navigate the night skies by relying on their hearing rather than their vision. This further contributes to the popular assumption that bats cannot see.
Are Bats Blind?
Despite the common misconception that bats are blind, the flying mammals actually boast a developed sense of sight.
All bats have eyes and can see, though some rely on their vision more than others. In fact, research indicates that larger bat species have better eyesight than humans.
Even though bats can see, their habits and behavior often lead people to assume the opposite.
Bats & Echolocation
Nearly two-thirds of the more than 1,000 bat species in the world use echolocation to fly and locate prey at night.
Echolocation occurs when flying bats emit a series of chirps or squeaks, which in turn create sound waves that bounce off insects and other objects and travel back to the highly developed ears of the sonar-producing creatures, enabling them to hunt and find their way in the darkness.
Their use of echolocation, rather than sight, commonly results in the mistaken belief that bats are blind. However, all bats can see.
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