Common Vampire Bat
Desmodus rotundus is common at Reserva Don Luis and we often catch it in our nets if they are placed close to the ground. It is a member of the family Phyllostomidae and is sangivorous (consumes blood). Its common name is Common Vampire Bat.
They usually roost in tree holes in a small colony and at nightfall seek out large mammals such as cattle from which to extract blood. They make a tiny incision with their razor sharp incisors and inject an anti-coagulant to make the blood flow. They then lap a small amount of this blood - around 2mm and the host mammal does not usually feel anything. They are associated with rabies, although only around 0.5% carry this virus, and as such are hated by cattle ranchers.
It is a large muscular bat of around 50g, pale brown/grey in colour with a long thumb that has three pads on it. Its ears are short and well seperated and it does not have a tail, only a small, narrow uropatagium. It is similar to Diamus youngii but can be distinguished by the lack of a white-wing tip and the fact that it has three thumb pads instead of two.