Bats bag bugs after dark by “seeing” with sound.
When hunting, a bat lets loose nearly 4,500 high pitched squeaks each second. The squeaks hit nearby objects and bounce back to the bat’s ears. This paints a picture in the bat’s brain of its surroundings.
If an insect flies within striking distance, the bat scoops it up with its wings or tail then passes the morsel to its furry face for an in-flight snack. In an hour of hunting, a single bat can stuff its belly with 1,000 bugs!
This little member of the perch family is only 3 to 4 inches long, but it’s big on color and style. Breeding males have orange-red bellies and shiny blue-green bars along their sides. These darters are state-endangered, found only in a few tributaries of the Osage River in west-central Missouri. If you float the Niangua River this summer, you may be lucky enough to spot its namesake fish swimming beneath your canoe. Learn more at mdc.mo.gov/field-guide.
Angie Daly Morfeld
Nichole LeClair Terrill