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Domesticate Bats

the name says it all. except the reason why.
  (+10, -2)(+10, -2)
(+10, -2)
  [vote for,

bats do not make good companions. they won't fetch slippers. they won't greet you when you get home. they're ugly little blighters, too. why the hell would you want one?

Pest control. even a small bat will eat approxiamately twelve tonnes of insects a night (or something like that. i swear. I read it on the back of a gum wrapper. next to the joke about the talking frog and information on how many wrappers you need to get a free gumco yo-yo).

anyway, if you could put the bat in a small harness and a leash that allows it to fly, train it not to act hostile towards you or your person, it'd be ideal to have on nights that are mosquito heavy. it'd be mutual. mosquitos are attracted to humans, bats eat mosquitos. plus, you wouldn't have to take it out in the day, so no one would know just how ugly the little bugger is.

I'm working on an idea about seeing eye bats for blind people in the night, but I've got nothing. if someone else wants to post it, feel free.

schematics, Aug 08 2004

The amount of bat intake should be in here somewhere. http://www.bu.edu/cecb/BATS/batfacts.html
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Bat Conservation http://batconservat...thouse/bathouse.htm
..this links to a guano-load of good info.. [bpilot, Oct 04 2004]

Bat-vectored deadly viruses http://www.vetmed.w...ra/hendraindex.html
Hendra Virus, Nipah viruses etc etc [ConsulFlaminicus, Oct 04 2004]

Canadian bat diseases http://www3.gov.ab....w/bats/disease.html
not nearly as much to be scared of. [schematics, Oct 04 2004]


       //they're ugly little blighters, too//
Terribly sorry my good man but I must contest this point. I found one unconscious bat outside a motel room, (long before meeting my significant other, of course), and kept it as a pet for a few weeks before releasing it. I'll be danged if the face of the thing didn’t look just like our border collies with maybe a bit more squint, and I swear it liked beer as much as I do.

       Sorry 'bout that, back to your idea.   

       There have been bats in our attic since we have moved to this house and every year I have to go through the same arguments against getting rid of them.
I bet that if a study was done to determine the lack of West Nile Virus in bat infested areas we'd have a lot more flying rodents as house guests. (+)

       I read somewhere that a bat eats 500 mosquitoes an hour, and there are plenty of programs to put out bat houses (like a bird house, but no floor) to encourage them. But frankly, the prospect of filling the room with 4,000 mosquitoes to keep it fed at night goes a little beyond the pale.   

       Leave 'em wild, I say.
DrCurry, Aug 08 2004

       One small bat eats 12 tons of insects a night? Lets do the math on this... 1 ton=2000lbs, 1gal water=8lbs(rounded)   


       typical night is 9 hours. 3000gal/9hrs=333.3g.p.h.   

       333.3gph/60=5.5 gallons per minute. Which is about half of what a fuel pump flows. So, if you consider insects as water, this is how much would flow through the poor little bat's posterior. That's alot of guano. This is why we don't learn biology from bubble gum wrappers.
destructionism, Aug 08 2004

       Well, when I was a kid a bat used my room to hang for several months (til my mother found about). I could ear them then, but not anymore. They smell a bit but are fascinating creatures. I'd love to have a flying fox as pet; did you see those soulful eyes?.
finflazo, Aug 08 2004

       Hey, If guano is poisonous, just don't eat it, okay? some days you worry me, l3lackEyedAngels.
schematics, Aug 08 2004

       Or you could use the guano to set up a little cottage industry selling home made gunpowder thereby trading a slow death for several quick ones.   

       //if you consider insects as water.../// Don't.
yabba do yabba dabba, Aug 09 2004

       //if you consider insects as water...// then swimming pools are very scary.
etherman, Aug 09 2004

       No, Noo, Nooo! Experienced bat and flying fox handlers (such as moi!) now wear protective clothing and follow strict hygeine procedures when interacting with our little friends. The reason?...recent discoveries that they are critical vectors of some extremely nasty diseases, often fatal.   

       [link] the only reason we don't see thousands of fatalities is because man-bat interaction has been so limited.
ConsulFlaminicus, Aug 09 2004

       I wondered about diseases, but if we are keeping them as pets why can't we vacinate them?
RobertKidney, Aug 09 2004

       mmmmmm.... flying fox curry. Best made with FF from colonies resident near banana plantations.
ConsulFlaminicus, Aug 09 2004

       hmm. as near as I can tell, bats in canada are pretty harmless, diseasewise. you'd have to vacinate them for rabies, but that's about it. beside most austrailian animals are just generally scary. eek! wombats!
schematics, Aug 25 2004

       I take personal offense at your dislike of wombats! It's a long story.
Jawzx, May 09 2005

       Can you vaccinate bats? I guess that makes sense. I've heard that bats can carry rabies without showing symptons. And they are vectors for new diseases as well. Bats = bad news. Every year in the US a bunch of people die from rabies because they didn't realize how dangerous bats are.
SpocksEyebrow, May 09 2005

       First hit on my google search bats+deaths+rabies+US:   

       How dangerous are bats? Bat rabies accounts for approximately one human death per year in the United States. Thus, some people consider bats to be dangerous. Nevertheless, dogs which often are considered "man's best friend," attack and kill more humans annually than die from bat rabies in a decade. Statistically speaking, pets, playground equipment, and sports are far more dangerous than bats. Clearly, bats do not rank very high among mortality threats to humans. Nevertheless, prudence and simple precautions can save lives.
normzone, May 10 2005

       Lots of problems to solve, but it would be cool to have them bring back fruit.
Ford, Jan 31 2008

       <old joke>What do you do with a wombat?   

       Play wom.   

MaxwellBuchanan, Jan 31 2008

       I'm currently exploring the world of falconry (exploring cautiously, from a distance), and the approaches used in training are several steps removed from the approaches I used in training my wild mustang.   

       I can only wonder what it would take to train a bat. Specific kinds of hawks have a low enough success ratio in hunting that it's possible to train them that it's a more reliable meal ticket to hunt with your help than to go it alone.   

       But it only works with specific types. Fish-eating hawks carry their prey and eat it elsewhere, so they can't be trained in this manner.   

       Bats catch-and-swallow, so I don't know how you'd teach them to play on your team. I would think the leash would limit their effectiveness.   

       But a (+) for this idea.
normzone, Jan 31 2008

       Bats were domesticated by the Assyrians over 3500 years ago, and selectively bred. Where on earth did you think chickens came from?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jan 31 2008

       Which came first, the hairy chicken or the bat's egg?
pertinax, Feb 01 2008

       Teach it to play baseball. Then you would have a domesticated baseball bat.
pashute, Mar 22 2011

       but bats already eat bugs by themselves. Domesticating them would be an extra unnecessary step. I mean, MAYBE you could raise the bug-destruction rate a LITTLE locally around your house, but, you know, same difference.
EdwinBakery, Mar 22 2011

       Bats = death! Oh dear. One of my more foolish hobbies invloves clambering about in old mines. Usually think of bats as cute little things that try to avoid cavers. Probably good in a curry:)
saedi, Mar 22 2011

       Could we not create a breed of dog that catches mosquitoes?
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 22 2011

       flying dogs [+]
pocmloc, Mar 22 2011

       I'll take bat curry over dog curry any day.
saedi, Mar 23 2011

       Rats, cats and hats have all been domesticated. Bats are a shoo-in.
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 23 2011


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