It is a common misconception that vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus) suck blood. They actually cut a tiny slit in

At the Cincinnati Zoo

an animal’s skin with their razor-sharp front teeth and lap up the blood. Chemicals in the bat’s saliva prevent clotting so the blood flows freely until it has had its fill, which is generally less than an ounce.


  • Length: 2.8 to 3.8 in
  • Weight: Up to 1.6 oz
  • Lifespan: Up to 9 yrs in wild; 20 yrs in captivity
  • Range: Mexico, Central and South America
  • Habitat: Rainforest, scrub, and desert
  • Diet: Mammal blood
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