Those softly squeaking, flying mammals that come out around sunset.BATS! They are amazing, the only flying mammal in the world, but some people find them frightening. It's no wonder, really. When you remember any Dracula movie, you know that Hollywood has portrayed these important animals as both scary and dangerous. I must admit, I do hang plastic bats around my front door for Halloween, to spook the trick or treaters. But on behalf of bats and bat lovers everywhere, let me say that they have gotten a bad rap, and they just don't deserve it. There are many myths about bats. For instance the term "blind as a bat." Well, they see quite well. But they also have great sonar, which is why they don't get caught in your hair. No matter what you've heard. And vampire bats? They only live in Latin America and they don't kill people. In fact, medical researchers are studying them because of the anticoagulants they produce. These might be useful in treating human health problems. Bats are not related to birds, nor are they mice or any other kind of rodent. They are more closely related to people than to rats. Actually, they are unique unto themselves - they are the Chiroptera. There are nearly one thousand different species of bats in the world, with 44 species in the United States. Twenty of these appear in Nevada.
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