This reddish, yellowish and brownish bat is one of the smallest bats in eastern North America. They are easily distinguished from other similar species by their tri-colored fur. The Eastern Pipistrelle (Perimyotis subflavus) is a species of bat that is widely distributed throughout the eastern parts of North America, ranging west until Kansas and Texas, from Honduras up north until southern Ontario. It is the only member of the genus Perimyotis.
Ten Facts about Eastern Pipistrelle
- Adults weigh between 4 to 10 g and reach a forearm length of 30 to 35 mm.
- Pipistrelles are nicknamed butterfly bats for their distinctive moth-like flight pattern.
- The females store their mates' sperm inside their reproductive tracts during their hibernation in winter and ovulate in early spring. They hibernate alone or in small groups in caves or mines at temperatures from 4 to 10°C, and they usually return to the same hibernation site year after year.
- When they wake up from hibernation, the females form maternity colonies that are no bigger than 20 bats, whereas the males roost alone during summer.
- Each one weighs about 20% of its mother's weight. For the first few days after birth the mother carries the blind and hairless pups between roosts. They grow quickly, are volant within 14-21 days and stop getting nursed at four weeks of age.
- Male pipistrelles live for about 15 years; the females can get as old as 10 years.
- These bats eat small insects. The hunt at the edges of forests, near streams or over open water and can achieve a speed of about 18 km/h.
- They can catch insects as much as every 2 seconds and increase their mass by 25% in only half an hour.
- The eastern pipistrelle is also one of the slowest flyers among the bats, reaching a maximum speed of 6-9 kph.
- Pipistrelles mate in autumn in the area around their hibernacula.