Mid-Season Finale S1E4 Taste For Blood: Nature’s Vampires

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In our mid-season finale, we have a story that takes us all the way from Copenhagen, to the rain forest of South America— from the belly of the beast, to it’s excrement—as we explore nature’s Vampires

Our guest is Dr. Marie Lisandra Zepeda Mendoza, whose recently published research on vampire bats and how they survive on such a peculiar diet is at the center of this story.

Blood is a challenging food source for a variety of reasons—a lack of nutrients, access, and potential for disease, to name a few. Vampire Bats, of which there are only 3 species, are the only mammals that manage to do this. Scientists have long wondered about how they are able to sustain themselves on such a bizarre diet—until now! To hear the full story and learn about some of nature’s other natural vampires, listen below:

To help you get the full picture, here are a few pictures and videos related to some of the vampires discussed in this episode!

Vampire Finch

Sea Lamprey

Sea lamprey. Petromyzon marinus. Photo from US EPA.
Sea lamprey. Petromyzon marinus. Photo from US EPA

And if you have ever wondered how a vampire bat can manage to get away with sucking blood unnoticed, this video from the Smithsonian does a great job of explaining how:

Animal Sound of the Week

Last Animal Sound of the Week was the answer to the long wondered question “what does the fox say?”, which is another way of saying that the sound last week was, in fact, a fox!

Listen to this weeks sound below and send us your guesses on Facebook for a chance to win a prize!

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