- Scientific Name
- Lasiurus semotus
- Global Conservation Status (IUCN)
- Not currently assessed
Hawaiian hoary bats feed on a variety of insects, including beetles, moths, and flies.
Fun Fact: The ancestors of ‘Ōpe‘ape‘a, or Hawaiian hoary bat arrived in Hawaii from North America roughly a million years ago. In a way, these bats were oceanic voyagers, like the Hawaiian people – the “pe‘a” in the name refers to the shape of the sail on an outrigger canoe.
Appearance: Hawaiian hoary bats are distinguished by the slightly frosty, silvery tint on their brown and reddish fur (though not all individuals have the frosty tint). They are about 30% smaller than their North American relatives, weighing between 14 and 18 grams.
Habitat: Hawaiian hoary bats like to roost in the leaves of native and non-native trees. Foraging habitats vary widely, including forest gaps and clearings, above the forest canopy and along roads. On the Big Island, the Ōpe‘ape‘a undergo seasonal migration, spending summer in the lowlands and overwintering in higher altitude areas.
Echolocation: The primary echolocation frequency of Hawaiian hoary bats is around 30 kHz. Their echolocation calls are generally higher-pitched and more variable than mainland Hoary bats.
Conservation Concerns: Habitat loss and wind energy development are the most immediate threats to the Hawaiian Hoary Bat. Hawaiian hoary bats are the only bat species found on the Hawaiian Islands and the only native land mammal to the islands.
Bat Conservation International Projects including the Hawaiian hoary bat:
- Bat and Wind Energy research and solutions: https://www.batcon.org/our-work/research-and-scalable-solutions/wind-energy/
- North American Bat Monitoring Program: https://www.batcon.org/our-work/research-and-scalable-solutions/north-america-bat-monitoring-program/
Counties: United States (Hawaii only)