7 things you never knew about the brown long-eared bat

Discover fascinating facts about the brown long-eared bat.

Brown long-eared bat. © Yves Adams/Getty
1

How big are the ears of a brown long-eared bat?

The brown long-eared bat’s ears are almost as long as its body, although, when at rest, it often rolls them up or tucks them under its wings.

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2

Why do brown long-eared bats have such large ears?

Brown long-eareds are not as reliant on sonar as most bats. They use their huge ears to listen for the rustling sounds made by moving insects and also use their eyes to spot prey.

3

How do brown long-eared bats hunt?

These slow but highly manoeuvrable flyers hunt in open woodland where they specialise in gleaning prey from foliage, although they will also take insects in flight.

4

When do brown long-eared bats fly?

Despite their use of visual cues, brown long-eareds don’t emerge from their roosts until an hour or so after sunset – later than most bat species.

5

Where are brown long-eared bats found?

The brown long-eared bat is widespread and fairly common across Europe. It occurs throughout mainland UK but not on Orkney, Shetland or the Outer Hebrides.

6

What are brown long-eared bats related to?

The brown long-eared bat was split into two species in the 1960s, the other being the much rarer grey long-eared bat, which, in Britain, is confined to the far south of England.

7

How long do brown long-eared bats live for?

Brown long-eared bats have been known to live as long as 22 years, but they usually reach only four or five.

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Main image: Brown long-eared bat. © Yves Adams/Getty