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Re: Ptero-hawks?

----- Original Message -----
From: "Matti Aumala" <mjaumala@nettilinja.fi>
To: <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Saturday, March 24, 2001 2:27 PM
Subject: Re: Ptero-hawks?

> > OTOH, I can't think of a good candidate, and you're right about the
> lack
> > of bat-eating bats.... (isn't he?)
> Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't owls prey on bats? If so, it would
> seem to me, that the bats have little chance of taking over the
> bat-hunting niche from predatory birds. There were no such competitors
> for pterosaurs however, and IMO it would make sense that during the
> millions of years they were the only flying vertebrates on Earth, at
> least one genus of predatory pterosaurs would have evolved.
> Anyhow, if it's not the birds that keep bats from evolving into
> bat-hunters, might it have something to do with their size? (To catch
> and carry another bat, the predatory bat would have to be considerably
> larger and stronger, wouldn't it?). To my knowledge, there are very
> few microbats that are actually big enough to hunt other things than
> insects. And the megabats naturally aren't hunting anything, though
> they certainly are big enough...
> --
> Matti Aumala
> mjaumala@nettilinja.fi

I don't normally send replies to the list (I'm just here to absorb
knowledge) but I feel compelled to do so now as it is incorrect to say there
are no bat eating bats.  To quote from the "Bats of the world Golden Guide"
"Carnivory, or the eating of meat, is restricted to several large species,
members of the families Nycteridae, Megadermatidae, and Phyllostomidae.
These bats capture and eat lizards, frogs, BIRDS!, rodents, and other bats.
Some species also consume insects and fruits.  Carnivorous bats typically
bite into the head of their prey, which kills quickly."
Individual species that do this include the LargeSlit-Faced Bat of Africa,
the Ghost Bat of Australia, and the Neotropical False Vampire Bat of Mexico,
Central, and South America.

Just my two cents.