Image: Little Northern Freetail-bat Illustration

Little Northern Freetail-bat Illustration

Little Northern Freetail-bats are small bats that roost in tree hollows, under loose bark and in cracks of poles and buildings in northern and north-western Australia. They are about 5 cm long with brown fur on their back and grey fur on their belly. Their short narrow and pointed wings help them fly quickly when hunting.

Creator:
Andrew Howells
Rights:
© Australian Museum

Notes

Little Northern Freetail-bats are small bats that roost in tree hollows, under loose bark and in cracks of poles and buildings in northern and north-western Australia. They are about 5 cm long with brown fur on their back and grey fur on their belly. Their short narrow and pointed wings help them fly quickly when hunting.

Little Northern Freetail-bats hunt at night for flying insects above the treetops. They fly over the treetops making small sounds through their mouth. The sounds bounce off objects, like insects, and come back to the bat. The bats listen to the sounds that come back and are able to tell where things are. This is called echolocation.

They catch insects in their jaws midair and eat them while they fly. Little Northern Freetail-bats sometimes also crawl around the ground searching for insects.

Females give birth to one live young each year. The young bats are born helpless and without hair. The young bats feed on milk from nipples located under their mother's armpits. The young bats stay with their mother until they are able to look for food for themselves.

Little Northern Freetail-bats are known as Freetail-bats because part of their tail extends past the skin that stretches between their back legs.

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