- Scientific Name
- Perimyotis subflavus
- Global Conservation Status (IUCN)
- United States Conservation Status
- Proposed Endangered
- Northern America
Diet: They feed mostly on caddisflies, beetles, and other small, soft-bodied insects. They are one of the first bats to emerge in the evenings to hunt and can be distinguished by their fluttering, erratic flight.
Fun Fact: Tricolored Bats in Nova Scotia roost almost exclusively on bearded lichens (Usnea trichodea), including colonies of mothers and pups.
Appearance: Formally known as the Eastern Pipistrelle (Pipistrellus subflavus), the Tricolored Bat is named for the banded yellow and brown colors found on the hairs on their back. They weigh between 4-7 grams, with wingspans ranging between 8 – 10 inches.
Habitat: This small bat is generally solitary, though females form small colonies (fewer than 35 individuals) during pup-rearing season. They can be found in a range of roosts, including tree cavities, caves, rock crevices, culverts, and buildings.
Tricolored Bats hibernate during the winter. Across most of their range, they hibernate primarily in caves and culverts. Some northern populations might migrate to southern hibernating locations.
Conservation Concerns: As a hibernating species, Tricolored Bats are vulnerable to white-nose Syndrome, with populations declining at least 90% due to the fungus. These severe declines have prompted their listing on Canada’s Endangered Species list. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife have also officially proposed listing the Tricolored Bat as Endangered under the Endangered Species Act.
Bat Conservation International Projects including the Tricolored Bat:
- North American Bat Monitoring Program (NA Bat)
- White Nose Syndrome Research
- Abandoned Mines and Subterranean Habitats
- Conservation of Public Lands
Written by Alyson Brokaw
Updated September 2022