other pollinators

Chiropterophily: bats are powerful pollinators that soar in the dark

Chiropterophily is the pollination of plants by bats. Bat pollination is most common in tropical and desert areas that have many night-blooming plants. Just like bees and birds that pollinate, nectar-consuming bats have evolved ways to find and harvest the sweet liquid.

Nectar bats have long tongues and can hover like hummingbirds. In turn, the flowers attract bats with their light-colored petals, large blossoms, fruity aromas, and plentiful nectar. And while the bat is drinking down the nectar, the pollen sticks to the bat’s face and muzzle.

According to the US Forest Service, bats pollinate 300 species of fruit including mangoes, guavas, and bananas. And don’t forget the agave plant. If it weren’t for bats we wouldn’t have tequila!


  • I wonder if anyone has tried to get bats to make honey and store it in boxes with frames. Given their size compared to a honey bee, I bet the amount of honey could be astronomical!

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