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Busting Myths About Bats

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Michael & Patricia Fogden/Corbis

Vampire bats are common in Central and South America, where they feed on livestock and sometimes people.

Bats catch a bad rep. 

Movies and folklore depict them as blood-thirsty, human-hunting demons of the night. They're a popular Halloween decoration, and the superstitions would recommend garlic to ward them off. 

But the scariest part about bats is what would happen if we didn't have them. They play an integral role in Nevada's ecosystem. Without them, insect populations would explode into unmanageable numbers, according to Jen Newmark, Wildlife Diversity Division chief for the Nevada Department of Wildlife. 

Nevada Department of Wildlife is participating in Bat Week this week, to educate and inform the public about the role of bats in nature. There are more than 20 bat species in Nevada - and none of them drink blood.  

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Jen Newmark, Wildlife Diversity Division chief, Nevada Department of Wildlife 

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