Watch: Vampire bats hunt with their ‘friends’

Vampire bats create social bonds with other bats and hunt with them. Credit: Ltshears

Vampire bats that had been in captivity together form bonds, so much so, that they continue to hunt together when released into the wild. Researchers found this out by attaching backpack trackers to the bats and following their movements as they foraged at night. During the day time, the bats stayed together in a hollow tree, but at night they drank blood from wounds of cows in nearby pastures. The team discovered that although vampire bats set out to forage alone at night, they reunite during a hunt. The researchers think the bats bonded socially so they could benefit from each other’s hunts and better compete with other groups of bat for food.

Read the study in PLOS Biology and watch a video on bat friendship below.