Florida Brazilian Free Tail Bat

Brazilian Free Tail Bat
This is a photograph of a Brazilian Free Tail bat, also known as a Mexican Free Tail.

The Brazilian, or Mexican Free-Tail bat is one of Florida's two primary species of colonizing bats.

The Brazilian free tail bat is medium sized with large feet and broad ears, which extend to its snout’s tip when laid forward. Its feet have visible bristles on the sides of inner and outer toes. It has thirty or thirty two teeth. It is well known to appear in Texas in large numbers every year. Whenever the Brazilian free tail bat appears in Texas, it inhabits a few selected caves known as the “guano caves”, which are located in the adjacent Edward plateau and Balcones Escarpments. Other places that these bats can utilize are old wells, mine tunnels, hollow trees, bridges, human habitations and other buildings at day time. A roost consists of several millions of bats which live together for companionship.

The Brazilian free tail bats spend their time in Texas during summer and spend the winter in lower latitudes such as Central America, Mexico and other parts of South America. They live in their habitants during the day and only appear a few minutes before darkness. These bats are known to fly higher than fifteen meters except when sweeping over a mass of water in order to have a drink. They take rapid and aggressive flights and only their angular narrow, large wings give them easy identification.

According to a research done on the droppings of Brazilian free tail bats, it has been noted that they feed on moths, ground beetles, weevils, leaf chafers, leaf beetles, water boatmen, flying ants, leaf hoppers and green blowflies. A Brazilian free tail bat is known to cause a great impact on the insects’ population.

One of the major events that make these bats to appear in Texas during summer is to allow a female Brazilian free tail bat to give birth and to raise its young one. Most mating is accomplished during spring and ninety percent of the female bats give birth to only a single baby per year. The gestation period of these bats can be ninety days or slightly more days. After giving birth, the young ones are deposited together on specific areas of the caves flightless and naked and lactation starts immediately. A female Brazilian free tail bat has its two mammary glands located laterally each having one pectoral teat functioning. The mothers do not carry the young ones with them during their nocturnal feeding flights. Despite the overcrowding of the great swarms of bats after birth, the mothers are able to recognize their young ones. When placed in the caves which look like incubators, the babies experience rapid growth and within one month the young ones almost have a body length equal to that of the adults and can fly on their own to feed.

Note that a Brazilian free tail bat is well known to be a carrier of rabies. Great care should therefore be taken when one encounters these bats. It is very possible to encounter with them because they live in any building provided that the building features has any accessible small cracks that the bats can make retreat during the day. When the bats inhabit your building especially those people whose building features the Spanish styles with clay tile roof, the only solution is using chemical treatment or looking for other roofs for your building. Whatever method you will choose to use it is always good to stay away from any Brazilian free tail bat.

All of the content and photos (even the background wallpaper) is by me, the owner of the Orlando Bat Control company. We are based in Orlando and service all of central Florida, and in fact the whole state of Florida, including Tampa and Miami. We operate in the towns of Winter Park, Lake Mary, Longwood, Deltona, Sanford, Conway, Doctor Phillips, Metro West, Kissimmee, and more. We do not perform bat extermination, nor are we a traditional bat pest control company. We are specialists in bat removal, especially the removal of bats in the attic. There is no such thing as a bat repellent or bat repellant. If you need to get rid of bats , we can provide the best possible solution for you. If you have any questions about a bat problem in Florida, give us a call, and we can schedule an appointment to inspect the problem and get it taken care of.