Neuroscience

How the brain regulates variability in motor functions

Anyone who has ever tried to serve a tennis ball or flip a pancake or even play a video game knows, it is hard to perform the same motion over and over again. But don't beat yourself up—errors resulting from variability ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Bats in Northeast India carry filoviruses that can infect humans

Researchers have proposed that bats are the natural reservoir of filoviruses, including highly fatal Ebola and Marbug viruses. Now, researchers report in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases that in Northeast India, bats, as ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Infected bats pose highest rabies risk in US: CDC

Infected bats are the leading cause of rabies deaths in the United States, according to a report released Wednesday by health authorities which found the risk posed by dogs had significantly fallen.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

New ebolavirus, found in bats, more widespread than first thought

A recently discovered species of ebolavirus may be more widespread than previously thought and could be hosted by a particular bat species, according to findings published by a University of Arkansas biologist. The ebolavirus ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Bat influenza viruses could infect humans

Bats don't only carry the deadly Ebola virus, but are also a reservoir for a new type of influenza virus. These newly discovered flu viruses could potentially also attack the cells of humans and livestock, researchers at ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Hunting Ebola's origins

The outbreak of Ebola that started in 2013 in West Africa, infecting nearly 30,000 people and killing 11,000 before it ended in 2016, has long left scientists puzzling over a key question: Where did the virus originate?

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Deadly Marburg virus found in Sierra Leone bats

Scientists have discovered Marburg virus in fruit bats in Sierra Leone. This is the first time the deadly virus has been found in West Africa. Five Egyptian rousette fruit bats tested positive for active Marburg virus infection. ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Vampire bats found to carry infectious bacteria at high rates

Bartonella are bacteria that cause endocarditis, a potentially life-threatening illness in humans and domestic animals. In Latin America, common vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus) are frequently infected by Bartonella, and ...

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Bat

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Bats are mammals in the order Chiroptera (pronounced /kaɪˈrɒptərə/). The forelimbs of bats are developed as wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of flight (opposed to other mammals, such as flying squirrels, gliding possums and colugos, that glide only for a distance). Bats do not flap arms like birds, instead they flap spread out hands where their fingers are very long and covered with a thin membrane or patagium. Chiroptera comes from two Greek words cheir (χειρ) "hand" and pteron (πτερον) "wing."

There is an estimated total of about 1,100 species worldwide, which is about 20 percent of all classified mammal species. About 70 percent of bats are insectivores. Most of the rest are frugivores, with a few species being carnivorous. Bats are present throughout most of the world and perform a vital ecological role by pollinating flowers, and eat various plants to dispere their seeds. Many tropical plants depend for their seeds to be distributed entirely by bats.

Bats range in size from Kitti's Hog-nosed Bat measuring 29–33 mm (1.14–1.30 in) in length and 2 g (0.07 oz) in mass, to the Giant golden-crowned flying fox which has a wing span of 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in) and weighs approximately 1.2 kg (3 lb).

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA