Vampires Online and Bats
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Now a quick post about the vampire bats.
Vampire bats are bats whose food source is blood, a dietary trait called hematophagy. There are three bat species that feed solely on blood: the Common Vampire Bat (Desmodus rotundus), the Hairy-legged Vampire Bat (Diphylla ecaudata), and the White-winged Vampire Bat (Diaemus youngi). All three species are native to the Americas, ranging from Mexico to Brazil, Chile, and Argentina. They generally have small ears and a short tail membrane. Their front teeth are specialized for cutting and their back teeth are much smaller than in other bats. Their digestive system is adapted to their liquid diet, and their saliva contains a substance, draculin, which prevents the prey’s blood from clotting. The vampire bats do not suck blood, but rather lap the blood at the site of the haemorrhage (where the prey is bleeding). The common vampire bat also has specialized thermoreceptors on its nose, which aids the animal in locating areas where the blood flows close to the skin of its prey.
Vampire bats hunt only when it is fully dark. Like fruit-eating bats, and unlike insectivorous and fish-eating bats, they emit only low-energy sound pulses. The common vampire bat feeds mostly on the blood of mammals (including humans), whereas both the hairy-legged vampire bat and white-winged vampire bat feed on the blood of birds. Once the common vampire bat locates a host, such as a sleeping mammal, it lands and approaches it on the ground.
Only 0.5% of bats carry rabies. However, of the few cases of rabies reported in the United States every year, most are caused by bat bites.
The Vampire bat is often used in horror movies about Vampires. Fictional vampires also consume blood, usually in order to survive. As influenced by the actual vampire bat the most common method is piercing a hole in the victim’s neck with sharp fangs and sucking blood from the pierced area. Fictional vampires are also commonly nocturnal, and rarely come out during the day, similar to vampire bats. Other attributes include, but are not restricted to, the ability to transform into a vampire bat and animal-like senses of sight and hearing.
Draculin is a very fun named substance. The name came, naturally from Count Dracula. It is a glycoprotein found in the saliva of vampire bats. It is composed of 411 amino acids. It functions as an anticoagulant, inhibiting coagulation factors, keeping the blood of the bitten victim from clotting while the bat is drinking. This anticoagulant is a hundred times stronger than any other known anticoagulant and is prescribed for heart attack and stroke patients.