New York Natural Heritage Program
Silver-haired Bat
Lasionycteris noctivagans (Le Conte, 1831)
Family: Evening Bats and Vesper Bats (Vespertilionidae)

State Protection: Not Listed
The species is not listed or protected by New York State.

Federal Protection: Not Listed

Did you know?
The scientific name of the silver-haired bat is derived from Greek and Latin words meaning "hairy, night-wandering bat" (Saunders 1988).

State Ranking Justification [-]
Silver-haired bats are present in New York during the summer, they migrate out of the state for the winter, and travel through during migartion. The status of silver-haired bats in New York is difficult to determine. One historical account by an early naturalist who shot and killed bats to identify them, reported that silver-haired bats were the most common bat in the Adirondack region (Merriam 1886). However, since there is no further known evidence that they were once common even regionally in New York State (Saunders 1988) their historical status is difficult to decipher. Recent work in Jefferson and Lewis counties have documented the majority of non-migration records within the state and may suggest that silver-haired bats could be locally common in that area (NYSDEC and US Army, unpublished data). Statewide, these bats are rarely captured, and records of this species outside of migration are limited. They are thought to be uncommon or rare in New York, as well as throughout most of the eastern part of their range. However, it is unknown truly how rare they are since they are often difficult to detect. Traditional mist-netting methodologies are often ineffective, and they are also typically difficult to confirm acoustically, as their echolocations may be confused with the very common big brown bat (Eptesicus fuscus). Little research has focused on this species, so more is warranted to determine the true status of silver-haired bats in the state.

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