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© Merlin D. Tuttle, BCI

Perimyotis subflavus

 tri-colored bat (Vespertilionidae)
 Perimyotis subflavus
 tri-colored bat

 Family Name: Vespertilionidae
 Genus: Perimyotis
 Species Name: subflavus

 Pronunciation:  Peri-my-otis sub-flave-us
 Common Name: tri-colored bat

The tri-colored bat (formerly known as the eastern pipistrelle) is one of the most common species of bats found throughout the eastern forests of America – from Nova Scotia and Quebec, south throughout the east coast of Mexico into northern Central America. But, surprisingly little is known about its daytime summer or maternity roosts. These bats are among the first bats to emerge at dusk each night, and their appearance at tree-top level indicates that they may roost in foliage or in high tree cavities and crevices.

They are not often found in buildings or in deep woods, seeming to prefer edge habitats near areas of mixed agricultural use. Where information about their foraging behavior is known, these bats have been found to feed on large hatches of grain moths emerging from corn cribs, indicating that they may be of important agricultural benefit. Tri-colored bat cannot withstand freezing temperatures and are among the first bats to enter hibernation each fall and among the last to emerge in spring. Hibernation sites are found deep within caves or mines in areas of relatively warm (close to 50E F), stable temperatures. These bats have strong roost fidelity to their winter hibernation sites and may choose the exact same spot in a cave or mine from year to year. As with many forest bat species which spend their winters underground, far more is known about their hibernation habitats and behavior than is known about their summer needs.

Approximate Range:

Source: IUCN Red List

To learn more, read about this bat in our BATS magazine archive:

How North America's Bats Survive the Winter
Bats in Palms: Precarious Habitat

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Unless otherwise noted, all images are copyright ©Merlin D. Tuttle and/or ©Bat Conservation International