13 Different Types of Bats in Montana

Different Types of Bats in Montana
Photo by Todd Cravens

Many people think of bats as pests, but they are crucial to a healthy ecosystem and should be respected. As Montana’s largest native mammal, bats deserve the utmost respect because they keep pests at bay and pollinate plants humans eat.

However, some bat species are endangered, so it’s important to educate yourself about the different types of bats in Montana before you start throwing away your old furniture! 

Whether you want to learn more about where types of bats in Montana live or how they help us grow food, this guide will teach you all you need to know about the 13 different types of bats in Montana.

1. Big Brown Bat

Big brown types of bats in Montana (Eptesicus fuscus) are the most common species of bat in North America.

They are solitary, roosting by themselves during the day and living off various insects that they capture while flying.

These types of bats in Montana usually fly at night using echolocation for hunting for insects, which they feed on exclusively. 

Big brown bats eat frogs, small lizards, scorpions, and centipedes. During the day, big brown types of bats in Montana typically hang upside down with their wings spread out to catch the warmth from the sun or artificial heaters.

2. Hoary Bat

Hoary bats, one of the thirteen types of bats in Montana, are small, weighing about 3-4 grams. They have a wingspan of about 18 inches but don’t fly very well. Hoary bats are the most common bat in North America. 

These bats in Montana typically roost under loose tree bark or inside caves and mines but will also use buildings. They are one of the only types of bats that hibernate during winter months. 

These types of bats in Montana have a wingspan of up to 14 inches and weigh about an ounce. The hoary bat is also known as a silver-haired bat due to its coat.

3. Silver-haired Bat

Silver-haired bats are one of the most abundant bats in North America. They usually roost during the day and come out at dusk to feed.

These types of bats in Montana typically live about 20 years and are found throughout the continental U.S., with some sightings as far north as Alaska and Canada. 

These types of bats in Montana prefer to live in forests with tall trees for roosts, tree cavities for hibernation, water for drinking, and insects for food.

They have been known to migrate up to 1000 miles from summer to winter habitats, though they don’t often travel more than 400 miles from their summer habitat. Silver-haired bats have been known to share their habitat with other species, such as raccoons, eastern chipmunks, flying squirrels, and white-footed mice.

4. Eastern Red Bat

Eastern Red Bat, The eastern red bat is one of thirteen types of bats in Montana. They are commonly found near the Rocky Mountain Front and are the only types of bats in Montana that hibernate during the winter.

They prefer to roost in trees and dense bushes, though they will also use a variety of other structures.

Eastern Red Bat, The eastern red bat is one of thirteen types of bats in Montana. They are commonly found near the Rocky Mountain Front and are the only type of bats that hibernates during the winter.

They prefer to roost in trees and dense bushes, though they will also use a variety of other structures.

5. Townsend’s Big-eared Bat

Townsend’s big-eared types of bats in Montana (Corynorhinus townsendii) is a species of vesper bat found in North America. Charles Townsend first described it from a specimen collected by A.S. Townsend, hence the name Townsend’s Big-eared Bat. 

The Townsend’s Big-eared types of bats in Montana are one of the larger in the United States, with an average body length between 2.5 and 3 inches and a weight between 6 to 8 grams. Its wingspan ranges from 7 to 8 inches, with females slightly smaller than males.

The fur on its back varies from brownish black to dark reddish brown, while its underside is lighter and often gray or cream colored.

6. Western Small-footed Myotis

The Western Small-footed Myotis types of bats in Montana are typically found in the central and eastern parts of North America.

It has a small foot with a length that ranges from 16 to 18 mm. Western Small-footed Myotis is the most common type of bat in Montana and one of the smallest. 

These types of bats in Montana have a wingspan between 3 and 4 inches and weigh about half an ounce. Males are mostly brown with a white underbelly, while females are entirely brown with black feet. 

Western Small-feet Myotis live year-round in caves or abandoned mineshafts where they roost during winter.

These types of bats in Montana’s diet consist mostly of insects but can also include small frogs, lizards, and mice.

7. Long-legged Bat

Long-legged types of bats in Montana are one of the most common bat species found in Montana. These bats can be recognized by their long legs and small, rounded ears. They also have very short muzzles and small eyes. 

The average weight for these types of bats in Montana is around 1 ounce, and they can grow to be as large as 4 inches long.

Long-legged bats typically consume their prey on or below the ground, but they can use echolocation when necessary. 

One interesting fact about these types of bats in Montana is that they prefer light-colored surfaces because they use camouflage when hunting at night or resting during the day.

Some studies suggest that over six million long-legged bats live throughout North America today!

8. Yuma Myotis

Yuma Myotis are medium-sized types of bats in Montana with dark brown fur coats. They have an average wingspan of 10 inches and weigh about 3 ounces.

They roost in abandoned mines, caves, trees, and buildings. Yuma Myotis are insectivores and eat bugs such as crickets and beetles. 

Yuma Myotis (Myotis yumanensis) are medium-sized types of bats in Montana that inhabit the southwestern United States and Mexico.

They roost in caves, mines, and other dark places during the day but emerge at night to feed on flying insects. 

Yuma Myotis are types of bats in Montana with furry brown or gray fur with lighter-colored undersides and a distinctive triangular nose leaf.

These bats are important predators of night-flying insects such as moths, beetles, and mosquitoes.

9. Long-eared Myotis

Long-eared Myotis types of bats in Montana are a species that are not often seen because they generally roost during the day and emerge at dusk to feed.

They are small, with a forearm length of about 3 inches. Males weigh about 3 ounces, and females weigh about 2 ounces. Their fur is dark brown to black on their backs and lighter on the underside. 

These types of bats in Montana’s ears are long, narrow, and pointed. In addition, they have long tails that are extended beyond the tail membrane, which is typically black or brownish.

Long-eared Myotis can be found throughout North America, from Alaska, Canada, and Mexico south to Florida, Texas, California, and Oregon.

These types of bats in Montana mostly roost primarily in caves but also use buildings such as churches, mines, and bridges.

10. Fringed Myotis

Fringed Myotis types of bats in Montana are typically found in the southwest United States and Mexico. They are small, brown-gray fur and have a fringe on their wing membranes.

Fringed Myotis (Myotis thysanodes) are small types of bats in Montana that can be found all around the state. 

They usually roost under bridges, in caves, mines, buildings, and even abandoned cars. Fringed Myotis has a distinctive appearance: brown fur, a black mask, and different ears shaped like a leaf.

These types of bats in Montana forage for insects such as moths, beetles, ants, and flies, as well as small vertebrates such as frogs and salamanders. 

Their diet is composed mainly of flying insects, but they occasionally eat nectar from flowers when available.

11. Pallid Bat

Pallid bats are found only in the southwestern United States and Mexico, so it is not surprising to find them in the Rocky Mountains.

These types of bats in Montana have a long snout that helps them eat nectar and use their wings to catch insects. However, the pallid bat lives throughout the western U.S., from Canada to Mexico. 

They are one of the largest bats in North America and live as far south as Argentina. Pallid bats are found mostly in grasslands, desert areas, and forests. They roost under loose bark on trees or buildings, under bridges, and in caves. 

These types of bats in Montana feed on moths, beetles, crickets, flies, and other insects. The pallid bat’s scientific name is Antrozous pallidus which means ‘pale-colored back.’

12. Spotted Bat

Spotted bats are one of the most common types of bats in Montana found in the U.S., and they live primarily in South America.

However, some spotted bats will migrate to North America and roost with other migratory bat species in the winter.

Spotted bats like to eat large, flying insects such as moths and beetles, which they can find on the ground at night or up high on trees during the day. 

Unlike some other types of bats in Montana that can use echolocation to avoid obstacles while flying around, spotted bats navigate by sight and sound (even though their vision is not as good as a human’s. When spotted bats hunt for food at night, they fly close to tree branches and leaves where insects might hide.

13. California Myotis

California myotis are medium-sized types of bats in Montana with long ears and a face that looks like it’s wearing glasses.

It roosts primarily in trees and shrubs but will also roost under bridges, buildings, or foliage. It feeds on moths, beetles, crickets, and other insects. 

These types of bats in Montana are one of the smallest bat species in the world. They weigh about 1.5-2 grams and have a wingspan between 7-8 inches. California Myotis is nocturnal, roosting during the day and flying at night to find food. 

These types of bats in Montana feed on beetles, mosquitoes, moths, flies, and other insects.

California Myotis hibernate during winter but can emerge if food sources are available or if they are disturbed by humans or predators while hibernating.

Conclusion

Montana has a lot of different types of bats that are all native to the state. Whether you are looking for a flying mammal, a rodent, or something else, we have you covered with the list below.

With so many different types of bats in Montana to choose from, it can be difficult to know which one is best for you. We created this list to help you find your perfect match! Happy Bat Hunting!

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