Texas is known for a lot of things -- Dallas Cowboys, cowboy boots, country music, fishing, huge lakes, bats...wait! What?! Yes. Texas is home to 32 species of the flying mammal -- the most of any of the 50 states. One city, San Antonio, Texas, is home to the largest bat colony in the entire world.

Bats Get a Bad Rap

The thing about bats, though, is they're not that bad of an animal. Bats are the only group of mammals, that includes us humans, that can fly. A bat's baby is called a pup.

Without bats, we would not be able to enjoy bananas, avocados, or mangoes because of the bat's help in the fruit's pollination (doi.gov). No, they do not land on your shoulder and bite down on your neck to drink your blood. No, they will not turn you into a vampire.

Bats in Texas

Our great state of Texas is home to 32 different species of bat. Most of those bats live in the San Antonio area with about 15 million living in Bracken Cave, which is just outside of San Antonio. Austin has a large bat population, too. Even Houston has a couple of bat stops to check out.

Thanks to Google Maps, we can see the largest areas for bat watching in the state.

Google Maps
Google Maps

If you really want to get interactive with the map, just go to this link at google.com.

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Bats in East Texas

Bats have even made their home in East Texas, just not 15 million of them. Buildings in Tyler, Longview and other cities could be home to small colonies of bats. Their best quality for hanging around is that they eat a ton of mosquitoes. Maybe not enough to stop the constant biting but it certainly helps. If you want to know more about the great bat watching our state has to offer, check out tpwd.texas.gov.

Oh, and enjoy this video of bats that makes them look like they're hanging out in a goth club.

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EDIT: This was originally published August 18, 2023.

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