• Big-berry manzanita and the skyline of the high peaks greet visitors who explore the steep and narrow portion of the High Peaks trail. NPS Photo|Sierra Willoughby

    Pinnacles

    National Park California

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  • Fee Free Days in Celebration of National Parks Week

    On Saturday April 19 and Sunday April 20, All National Parks including Pinnacles will waive entrance fees. In addition, Western National Park Association Sales in visitor centers of the park will be discounted by 15%

Bats

Townsend's Big-eared Bats have large ears that they roll up when hibernating.

A Townsend's Big-eared Bat.

Photo by Sue Smith

Bats at Pinnacles find refuge in the caves, cliffs, and trees. There is currently a colony of Townsend's Big-eared Bats in the Bear Gulch Cave and a colony of the Western Mastiff bat in the Balconies cave area.

Out of the 23 species of bats in California, 14 species are known to occur within Pinnacles National Park. These bats are:

Western Pipstrelle (Pipistellus hesperus)
Western Red Bat (Lasiurus blossevilii)
Hoary Bat (Laisiurus cinerius)
Townsend's Big-eared Bat (Corynorhinus townsendii)
Pallid Bat (Antrozous pallidus)
Big Brown Bat (Eptesicus fuscus)
California Myotis (Myotis californicus)
Small footed Myotis (Myotis ciliolabrum)
Long eared Myotis (Myotis evotis)
Fringed Myotis (Myotis thysanodes)
Long-legged Myotis (Myotis volans)
Yuma Myotis (Myotis yumanensis)
Brazilian Free-tailed Bat (Tadarida brasiliensis)
Western Mastiff Bat (Eumops perotis)

All of the fourteen species at Pinnacles and forty-one of the forty-four North American bats eat insects, spiders, and their kin. Three species eat fruit or nectar. There are only three species of vampire bats -- they live in South America and feed on birds and mammals.

Bat Facts
"Blind as a bat."
Bats not only "see" the world with echolocation, but they have good eyesight. Some bats find their food exclusively with sight and they can see better than humans in dim light.

"They get tangled in your hair."
Bats can be very curious. They will often circle around something or someone new in their air space to take a second look.

"Bats are flying mice."
Bats are actually more closely related to primates than to rodents. Most bats give birth to only one "pup" per year which they feed milk. Other than humans, bats are the longest lived mammals in North America; one little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) is at least 34 years old.

"Bats are just pests."
Bats are important insect predators, pollinators, and seed dispersers. Bats live on all continents except Antarctica and are on the decline worldwide.

"All bats carry rabies."
Bats are not "carriers" of rabies; less than 1% of bats contracts rabies and dies. Bats will bite in self defense. Avoid handling them as well as other wildlife.

http://sfnps.org/bats

Did You Know?

Juan Bautista de Anza NHS logo

The Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail runs 1200 miles from Arizona to central California, passing close to Pinnacles National Park at the town of San Juan Bautista. Explore the trail by foot, or view the Anza Trail Guide online for more information. More...