Bats (vampire bat)

Despite, their associations with blood sucking the common bat is in fact an incredibly useful mammal that eats mosquitoes and keeps to itself on a nocturnal schedule. However it is the Vampire bat that has attracted sinister connotations as a blood sucking pest synonymous with Halloween. Vampire bats use their sharp incisor teeth to dig holes into their victims and then suck their blood. The vampire bat feeds on the blood of mammals, and in some isolated cases humans, as they sleep (they rarely initiate contact with an awakened mammal).

Discovered in South America in the 16th Century it is these winged beasties that are said to have helped influence the development and lore of Vampire characters in myths, legends, literature and films. Most notably Bram Stocker’s Count Dracula who has the ability to transform into a bat and does so several times in the novel. The novel also goes on to mention vampire bats twice and the animal’s trademark bloodsucking and the two hole puncture wounds left on its victims are synonymous with the modern day representation of a vampire from True Blood to Twilight.