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Bats, Snakes and Spiders – Oh my!

Halloweens Creepy Creatures

Bats 🦇

Dracula may have you thinking bats are vicious creatures who roam as Vampires in the night. Blood thirsty for humans? They are not. They’d prefer insects instead. When it comes to feeding, Canadian bats dine on night-flying insects like moths, wasps, ants, flies, beetles, gnats mosquitos, midges and mayflies. Many Bats in Canada are at risk right now - white-nose syndrome is a disease caused by a fungus that grows on bats as they hibernate during the winter. Affected bats end up dying as a result of and starvation. 

Canadian Wildlife Federation has launched a SAVE THE BATS campaign, check it out how you can save a bat and celebrate Halloween this year. 

Little Brown Bat

📸 : The Canadian Encyclopedia

Snakes 🐍

Even the bravest of the bunch (like Indiana Jones!) can have a fear of Snakes. But really, they’re actually pretty useful around the garden. Snakes can help keep garden pests like slugs, grubs and beetles at ay. By caring for snakes, you’re also helping an at-risk wildlife species. Of the 24 Canadian snake species, 13 of them are at risk of extinction. How can you help? Offer them a home in your backyard (they love making homes in fallen bark!), ditch the and give these preciousssss predators a little space. 

 Garter Snake

Crows 🦅

Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Raven” was an influencer to create terror that is connected to the crow. Hitchcock’s The Birds has instilled a real fear all feathered friends. But fear-not, these smart birds actually help us out. They are watch dogs to your home, if you hear crows frequent cawing it is a signal to others that an “invader” has been spotted. You may also notice crows hanging out on the side of the – cleaning up any unfortunate roadkill. While it’s a bit of a gross task, some-birdy’s got to do it. This video Crows, Smarter Than You Think may just change the way you think about “bird brains”.

 Canadian Crow

Spiders 🕷

Spiders might be the most feared creatures of them all. But these eight-legged allies keep pesky bugs like mosquitos at bay. A study published in The Science of Nature has found that spiders eat between 400 and 800 million tons of insects and bugs every year. Spiders also feed our birds - between 3,000 and 5,000 bird species rely on spiders to survive. 

The scariest spider in Canada? The Black Widow.

Or maybe not? Black Widow spiders are actually quite shy. Black Widows usually run away if they are threatened and sometimes, they will “play dead” in hopes that predators will leave them alone. The reality is that Black Widows will typically only bite if they feel like they have no choice!

 Canadian Black Widow

Many species get bad reputations – learning more about these spooky critters can help you channel your own inner creepy creature and understand the important roles they play. The more you learn, the more you’ll realize these animals aren’t so scary after all!

Take this quiz from the National Wildlife Federation: Which spooky Halloween animal are you?

Check out the Canadian Wildlife Federation Halloween Central

Share Your Creepy Critters

Happy Halloween!  🧡 🖤  We’d love to see what kinds of spooky critters you've seen on your adventures. Tag us in any of your creepy creature photos! @thewildlifeca

 



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