Townsend's Big-eared Bat
- Scientific Name: Corynorhinus townsendii
- Weight: 8-14 grams
- Wingspan: 30-32centimeters
- Distribution: Southwestern Canada, the western United States to southern Mexico, and a few isolated populations in the eastern United States.
- Ecology and Behavior: In the eastern United States with rare exception, this species has only been reported from caves. These bats hibernate in caves or mines where the temperature is (54* F) or less, but usually above freezing. Hibernation sites in caves often are near entrances in well ventilated areas. If temperatures near the entrance become extreme, they move to a more thermally stable part of the cave. They hibernate in clusters of a few to mare than 100 individuals. During hibernation, the long ears may be erect or coiled. Solitary bats sometimes hang by only one foot. Maternity colonies usually are located in relatively warm parts of the cave. During the maternity period, males are apparently solitary. Where males spend the summer is unknown. No long distance migrations are known. Like many other bats they return year after year to the same roost sites.
- Food Habits: May feed entirely on moths.
- Reproduction: Mating begins in autumn and continues into winter, sperm are stored during winter, and fertilization occurs shortly after arousal from hibernation. One young is born during June. Young are large at birth weighing nearly 25% as much as their mother. They can fly in 2-3 weeks and are weaned by 6 weeks. Lifespan may be 16 or more years.
- Status of Populations: Endangered. Probably fewer than 12,000 individuals exist in the eastern United States.
The presence of species in particular counties is based on both summer and winter occurrence records compiled by the TNBWG, an unshaded county does not represent the absence of a particular species from that county, only the lack of an occurrence record. These maps are intended for educational and general information purposes only and are not intended for use in consultation with US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) or any other state or federal agencies. Project proponents should contact USFWS and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency for the most up to date ranges for bat species in Tennessee.
Range Map Data Sources
National bat ranges - Layer downloaded from nationalatlas.gov. The data were compiled by Bat Conservation International using data from state natural heritage programs, published literature, unpublished reports, museum collections, and personal communications from university, Federal, State, and local biologists.
TN county occurrence data - TWRA Scientific Collection Permit data compiled from 2000-2013, TWRA Wildlife Diversity database, published literature [Graves and Harvey 1974. (Journal of the Tennessee Academy of Sciences 49:106-109)], personal communications from university, Federal, State, local biologists, and TNBWG members.