Hawaiian hoary bat

Lasiurus cinereus semotus / ‘Ōpe‘ape‘a

The ‘ōpe‘ape‘a is Hawai‘i’s only native terrestrial mammal. Males and females have a wingspan of about 1 foot, and females are typically larger than males. Both sexes have a heavy fur coat that is brown and gray, and ears tinged with white, giving it a frosted or "hoary" look. The Hawaiian name refers to a half taro leaf or canoe sail shape; these being somewhat similar to the shape of the bat. 

These mammals have been documented near the Refuge and may use the Refuge for foraging areas (wetlands appear to be important foraging areas), just before and after sunset, feeding on night-flying insects, including moths, beetles, crickets, mosquitoes, and termites.

Breeding has only been documented on the islands of Hawai‘i and Kaua‘i. Bats are affected by habitat loss, pesticides, predation, and roost disturbance. A reduction in tree cover (roost sites) might be the primary reason for the species’ decline in Hawai‘i.

Facts About Hawaiian hoary bat


Native and nonnative night-flying insects 


 Most of the available documentation suggests that this elusive bat roosts among trees in areas near forests