Bat Terminology

Mexican Free-Tailed BatDefinition of terms when describing bats:

Calcara cartilaginous structure protruding from the ankle supports the back edge of the interfemoral membrane. The interfemoral membrane acts as a rudder and also reduces oscillations of the body through each wing-beat cycle

Forearm: longest bone in arm, with hook-like thumb at one end.

Keel: flap of skin on edge of tail which is a distinctive projection of the calcar. See photo of keel and calcar at: University of Michigan Museum of Zoology

Total lengthmeasured from nose tip to tail tip.

Premolars: are the teeth with points, just behind the canine. Molars are further back and are relatively flat.

Tragus: a projection surrounded by external ear flap, often stiffened with cartilage. Ours is a little blunt one, in front, center of ear, forming front of entrance to ear canal.