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False Vampire Bats: Megadermatidae

Physical Characteristics

False vampire bats are medium-sized to large bats with a head and body length of 2.6 to 5.5 inches (6.5 to 14.0 centimeters). Their wingspans can reach 3 feet (1 meter). The Australian false vampire bat, also called the Australian ghost bat, is among the largest of the microchiropteran (my-kro-keer-OP-ter-an) bats. Microchiroptera is one of the two suborders of bats and includes most of the bats in the world.

False vampire bats have large ears joined by a band of skin across the forehead and noseleafs, which are fleshy protrusions from the nose. The heart-nosed bats have a leaf-like nose that is heart-shaped.

Megadermatids (meg-ah-der-MAT-ids; bats in the family Megadermatide) have a tail that is either short or absent. These bats typically have relatively short and broad wings.

Their fur tends to be long and gray in color, although the yellow-winged bats have bright yellow or orange wings and ears, with bluish fur. False vampire bats have twenty-six or twenty-eight teeth. The flesh-eating, or carnivorous, megadermatids, such as the Australian false vampire bats, have sharp and strong canine teeth for tearing flesh and crushing bones.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceMammalsFalse Vampire Bats: Megadermatidae - Physical Characteristics, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Megadermatids And People, Australian False Vampire Bat (macroderma Gigas): Species Account - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, CONSERVATION STATUS