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One of the few downsides to summer is an influx of mosquitoes

Often one of the most misunderstood species in Kansas, and throughout the world, bats are fascinating nocturnal creatures. The only mammals capable of flying and staying in flight, bats are truly a winged-wonder.

The big brown bat is one species you might spot in Kansas. As the name implies, big brown bats are brown in color and are one of the largest bats in Kansas. They grow upwards of 5 inches long and weight more than an ounce.

These bats can best be identified by their large head, broad nose, and nearly black and hairless face, ear, wings and tail. They also don short, rounded ears and short, broad wings.

Feeding mostly on hard-bodied insects and other “pest,” big brown bats pose little to no threat to humans. In fact, their eating habits make them a helpful species to have around farms and other operations where insects may be unwanted guests.

Your best chances of spotting these bats will be during the early evening hours as they leave daytime roosts, such as old barns or abandoned buildings, for a night of hunting insects.

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