Monday, March 28, 2011


Bat is an interesting word as it can be an object, an action, an Egyptian goddess or a flying mammal. I find the flying mammal to be the most interesting.

Let's start with bat as an object. A bat is a club used in certain sports games, most predominantly in baseball. A baseball bat is generally around 33 ounces in weight. It generally has a diameter of 2 3/4 inches in it's thickest part and is usually no longer than 42 inches. The American major league regulations state that bats must follows the sizes previously listed as well as being made of solid wood. Bats which are hollowed out or filled with substances such as foam are not qualified to use in a major league game. Most wooden bats are made from ash. Other natural materials used include maple tree wood, hickory wood, and bamboo.

Barry Bonds, who has played with the Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants currently holds the major league title of hitting the most home runs. He's hit 762. Hank Aaron held the title for several decades with 755 home runs.

In researching the word bat I came to find that there is a goddess named Bat in Egyptian mythology. Bat is a cow goddess depicted depicted as a human face with cow ears and horns. The name Bat may be linked to the word ba with the feminine suffix 't'. Ba means something like personality or emanation and is often translated as 'soul' . The word can also be read as 'power' or 'god'. Bat became strongly associated with the sistrum ( a musical instrument).

Finally let's touch a bit on the much loved yet feared flying mammal known as a bat. These creatures are studied and loved by millions around the world. There are about 1,100 species of bats worldwide. Most bats each insects with a bout 1/3 of them eating fruit. Bats range in size from 1 1/3 inches in length with a wings span of about 6 inches up to 14 inches long with a wingspan of near 5 feet. The forelimbs of bats are webbed and developed as wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight. Other mammals said to fly actually glide rather than fly. Bats do not flap their entire forelimbs, as birds do, but instead flap their spread out digits.

Most bats a nocturnal and are active during the night-time. They groom and hibernate or sleep during the day in various roosts such as hollows, crevices, foliage, and even human-made structures; and include "tents" that bats construct by biting leaves.Being nocturnal creatures bats can easily navigate through the dark. It is during the night-time that they do their hunting and can effortlessly sneak up on their prey. Bats seem to use their ears to locate and catch their prey.

And how about the vampire bat? . There are a few species of bats that consume blood exclusively as their diet. This type of diet is referred to as hematophagy. These species include the Common Vampire Bat, the White-winged Vampire Bat, and the Hairy-legged Vampire Bat. The Common Vampire Bat typically consumes the blood of mammals, while the Hairy-legged and White-winged feed on the blood of birds.


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