Following the success of earlier ‘Quick Guide’ books, this slim little volume tackles one of the few groups of mammals that can fly. Divided into large fruit bats and smaller insecteating bats, this ultimate quick identification guide covers Africa’s 12 bat families. An informative introduction touches on evolution, flight, echolocation and reproduction, demystifying an animal that is all too often misunderstood. The text describes the facial characteristics and wing shapes common to each family and points out features that can help to distinguish between them. But it is the photographs and annotated line drawings that are most useful for identification. They include bats in flight and roosting sites, and close-ups of facial structures and wings that highlight key diagnostic attributes. An added extra is a photographic section showing the skulls of a variety bats.
This is a valuable guide for anyone with an interest in wildlife and its less common members.