12 September 2009

Great tits hunt and kill sleeping bats


Great tits are only about 5 inches long, but their prey - the pipistrelle bat - is smaller still, just an inch or two in size. The bats spend the winter months hibernating in rock crevices. They're well hidden, but when they wake up, they start making noises and these are the telltale signs that the birds are listening out for. They hunt by flying slowly and systematically across the cave walls, eavesdropping on the bats' noises, and killing them while they're still woozy...

Has the bat-killing behaviour passed down through generations of tits as a local cultural tradition? It's impossible to say for now, but there's certainly precedence for this - British blue tits famously learned to open milk bottles to drink the cream at the top and the behaviour spread like wildfire across the country.
Photo credit.

1 comment:

  1. I thought great tits would be bigger

    ReplyDelete

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