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Bats of Virginia

Bats are one of the most diverse mammal groups. There are more than 1,000 species worldwide, comprising about one-fifth of all mammal species. The United States is home to 45 native bat species. Situated in the mid-Atlantic region, Virginia shares the diversity of bat species found in both the Northeast and Southeast. Bats are the number one predator of night-flying insects, and all bat species in Virginia are insect eaters. Seventeen species of bats have been documented in Virginia, although only 15 are likely to be residents in the state.

Cave Bats

Corynorhinus townsendii virginianus: Virginia Big-eared Bat (Federally and State Endangered)* - Official State Bat of Virginia

Eptesicus fuscus: Big Brown Bat

Myotis grisescens: Gray Bat (Federally and State Endangered)

Myotis leibii: Eastern Small-footed Bat (Rare species in Virginia)**

Myotis lucifugus: Little Brown Bat

Myotis septentrionalis: Northern Long-eared Bat

Myotis sodalis: Indiana Bat (Federally and State Endangered)

Perimyotis subflavus: Eastern Pipistrelle Bat

Tree Bats

Corynorhinus rafinesquii macrotis: Southeastern Big-eared Bat (State Endangered in Virginia)

Lasionycteris noctivagans: Silver-haired Bat

Lasiurus borealis: Eastern Red Bat

Lasiurus cinereus: Hoary Bat

Lasiurus seminolus (likely resident): Seminole Bat

Myotis austroriparius: Southeastern Bat (Rare species in Virginia)

Nycticeius humeralis: Evening Bat

Non Resident Bats - Two bats have been recorded only one time each:

Lasiurus intermedius: Northern Yellow Bat (1 historic record, not a likely resident)

Tadarida brasiliensis: Brazilian Free-tailed Bat (there is a published record)

Information on bats tracked as natural heritage resources including images

Natural Heritage database search tool
(Go to Species/Natural community query - type bat in the Common Name/Natural Community section - select mammals under the Taxonomic Group - then click the submit query tab.)

Virginia's Bats at a Glance

  • Read and/or download our brochure about bats.

PDFs of Powerpoint Presentations on Bats and White Nose Syndrome

To learn more about bats, visit these Web sites:

* "Endangered" is a legal designation under federal and/or state endangered species laws. A species listed as endangered is considered to be at risk of becoming extinct throughout all or a significant portion of its range. Endangered species laws provide protection for listed species from impacts due to human activity, and govern programs aimed at species recovery (that is, preventing extinction).

** "Rare species" are uncommon species tracked by the Virginia Natural Heritage Program.