Eastern Small-footed Bat
- Scientific Name: Myotis leibii
- Weight: 3-4 grams
- Wingspan: 21-25centimeters
- Distribution: Eastern Canada and New England south to Alabama and Georgia and west to Oklahoma.
- Ecology and Behavior: This is the smallest bat in the eastern United States. Eastern small-footed bats hibernate in caves or mines and are among the hardiest cave bats in the eastern United States. They are one of the last to enter the caves in autumn and often hibernate near cave or mine entrances where temperatures drop below freezing and where humidity is relatively low. Several have been found hibernating in cracks in cave floors and under rock slabs in quarries and elsewhere. In summer they often inhabit buildings and caves. They often fly repeated patterns within less than one meter of the floor of a cave or crevice, hang up on the wall, and then fly again. These bats emerge to forage shortly after sunset. They fly slowly and erratically, usually 1-3 meters above the ground.
- Food Habits: Apparently these bats fill their stomachs within an hour after beginning to forage in the evening. They consume flies, mosquitoes, true bugs, beetles, ants, and other insects.
- Reproduction: One young is born each year: probably in late spring or early summer. Small nursery colonies of 20 bats or fewer have been reported from buildings. Lifespan is unknown but may be more than 9 years.
- Status of Populations: Eastern small-footed bats are rare throughout their range, although they are more common in the northern rather than southern 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were compiled by Bat Conservation International using data from state natural heritage programs, published literature, unpublished reports, museum collections, and personal communications from university, Federal, State, and local biologists.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.