This movie requires Flash Player 8. Download Flash Player 8

© 2021ApologeticsPress
(800) 234-8558
syndication   |  About AP   |  Sign up for E-mail Newsletter    |    Privacy Policy    |    Contact Us
Issue Features
View this issue online as it looks in print
Discovery Magazine 10/1/2000

How Helpful Can Bats Really Be?

Even though bats are not the prettiest animals in the world, and even though some of them feed on our livestock, many bats really are very helpful.

That’s right, bats do many things that help people and the environment. One of their most helpful jobs is eating insects. I suspect you did not know that the little brown bat can eat 600 mosquitoes in one hour! In fact, there is one colony of bats in the state of Texas that eats 256,000 pounds of insects every night. The weight of that many insects is the same as 23 Asian elephants. Just think how many insects there would be if the bats did not eat them. When you see a bat flying around in your backyard or near a street lamp, he probably is eating mosquitoes. If he eats them, that means they cannot bite you, and fewer mosquito bites mean less itching, less disease, and more fun.

Not only do bats eat mosquitoes that bug everyone, but they also eat bugs and worms that affect farmers’ crops. A colony of just 150 big brown bats can eat 18 million rootworms in one summer. These worms kill crops if the bats don’t eat them. Since farmers can grow more crops, the price goes down and more people get to eat good food at cheaper prices.

Besides eating bugs, some bats may help scientists create new medicines. The saliva of the vampire bat has a special chemical called an anticoagulant that keeps blood from clotting. This chemical is much stronger than the medicines scientists have created so far. Research on the bat’s saliva may one day give us a medicine that helps people with heart problems.

Another helpful thing that bats do is pollinate flowers and trees. Many nut, date, fig, and banana crops benefit from bats dropping seeds or carrying pollen from one tree to another.

God designed the Universe so that things have a purpose. Bats eat insects, pollinate plants, and help scientists create new medicines. As human beings, our purpose is to fear the Lord, keep His commandments, and teach other people about Him and His Son Jesus (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Let’s all do our jobs so that God will be proud of us.

Copyright © 2000 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

This document may be copied, on the condition that it will not be republished in print unless otherwise stated below, and will not be used for any commercial purpose, as long as the following stipulations are observed: (1) Apologetics Press must be designated as the original publisher; (2) the specific Apologetics Press Web site URL must be noted; (3) any references, footnotes, or endnotes that accompany the article must be included with any written reproduction of the article; (4) textual alterations of any kind are strictly forbidden; (5) Some illustrations (e.g., photographs, charts, graphics, etc.) are not the intellectual property of Apologetics Press and as such cannot be reproduced from our site without consent from the person or organization that maintains those intellectual rights; (6) serialization of written material (e.g., running an article in several parts) is permitted, as long as the whole of the material is made available, without editing, in a reasonable length of time; (7) articles, excepting brief quotations, may not be offered for sale or included in items offered for sale; and (8) articles may be reproduced in electronic form for posting on Web sites pending they are not edited or altered from their original written content and that credit is given to Apologetics Press, including the web location from which the articles were taken. Further, documents may not be copied without source statements (title, author, journal title), and the address of the publisher and owner of rights, as listed below.

For catalog, samples, or further information, contact:

Apologetics Press
230 Landmark Drive
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
Phone (334) 272-8558

Web Store

Defending the Faith Study Bible

We are very excited to announce the NEW AP Defending the Faith Study Bible now available.

Featured Audio


Click the following link to visit our Multimedia section.

Featured Audio