Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis)
(Federally listed as Endangered)
The Indiana Bat is a small bat with dark gray to
grayish-chestnut fur, and a pink nose. The body length is about
four to five inches and the wingspan is approximately 9 – 10
inches. They feed on small, night-flying insects that they catch
Habitat: Indiana Bats spend the summer months living solitarily or in small groups of less than10 individuals, and they are usually found in forested habitats. During the summer, they live in hollow tree cavities, spaces underneath loose tree bark, abandoned buildings, abandoned mines or in caves. During the winter months, they hibernate in colonies in caves.
Current and Historic Distribution: Oklahoma lies along the western edge of the Indiana Bat’s geographic range and it is a very rare species here. Indiana Bats have only been detected a few times in Oklahoma – primarily during the fall and winter in forested parts of the Ozark and Ouachita Mountains along the state line with Arkansas.
Reasons for Decline: The Indiana Bat’s decline is attributed primarily to disturbance of bats in their hibernation caves. Indiana Bats hibernate in cave and mine shafts which provided a relatively constant temperature and humidity. Approximately 80% of the entire population hibernates in only six caves in Indiana and Kentucky. Loss of mature timber and trees with large cavities has played a role as well.