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caption: A Pallid Bat colony on Santa Cruz Island.  
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A Pallid Bat colony on Santa Cruz Island.
Credit: Robin Allen Mulligan

Bats: Busting the myths

Join Chris Morgan to meet bats up close and in person as he tries to figure out the mystery behind these winged mammals.

This Halloween season you may have already put up scary bat decorations around your house. But even beyond the scary, bats just aren’t viewed very well in our culture.

“Bats have this scary, sinister mythology,” bat researcher Jill Carpenter told me. “It's just sort of always that they were dark and dirty and mysterious, because they were hidden.”

Mysterious yes, but bats are also really fascinating -- all 1,400 species of them. From the bumblebee bat that weighs less than a penny, to the flying fox with a 6-foot wingspan. And these creatures provide important ecological services for humans, like eating 1,200 mosquitos a night for starters!

So this Halloween, let's peer into the dark, and separate fact from fiction about these wonderful winged mammals of the night.

caption: A Trident-nosed Bat. This photo was taken in an ancient Roman ruin in the western desert of Egypt (Bahariya Oasis). 
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Also, this week is bat week so be sure to check out batweek.org for more information.

THE WILD is a production of KUOW in Seattle in partnership with Chris Morgan and Wildlife Media. It is produced by Matt Martin and edited by Jim Gates. It is hosted, produced and written by Chris Morgan. Fact checking by Apryle Craig. Our theme music is by Michael Parker.

Follow us on Instagram (@thewildpod) for more adventures and behind the scenes action!