Vampire bats use smell to locate blood vessels


Intravenous news: News Medical report “In the labs of University of California, San Francisco and from the wilds of Venezuela scientists have discovered how vampire bats have evolved over the years with a unique weapon that enables them to zero in for a ravenous feed on the warmest blood vessels of their prey.

It’s well known that bats can pinpoint their prey by emitting their chirps and squeaks like sonar as they fly to spot a tempting target meal by analyzing its returning echoes. However vampire bats do not fly, they run to any animal or unwary bird whose blood will satiate their hunger, and they are uniquely far more specialized than other bats, according the David Julius, a distinguished neurophysiologist at UCSF.

Julius and his lab colleagues found vampire bats or Desmodus rotundus as they are scientifically known as – possess a unique heat-sensitive molecule within specialized nerve endings on the surface of their noses. This molecule detects infrared radiation signals from the heat of blood as it flows close beneath the skin of a prey’s veins and arteries at about 86 degrees Fahrenheit.”

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