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Repeat attack.

Vampire bats often feed on the blood of the same individuals night after night. Scientists have discovered how the bats find their preferred prey in the dead of night.

Udo Groger, a biologist at Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, discovered that vampire bats, Desmodus rotundus, can memorize and recognize the sound of an individual's breathing. Like a voice, every individual has a unique breathing pattern. The bats can follow this sound to its source.

That can be a lifesaving trick. Vampire bats feed on prey, such as livestock, that are 1,000 times their size. "Biting [the] animal is a big risk," says Groger. If a bat finds an animal that doesn't wake while the bat feeds, the night flier benefits by returning to the heavy sleeper several nights in a row.
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Title Annotation:vampire bats eating habits
Author:Bryner, Jeanna
Publication:Science World
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 23, 2006
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