Wednesday words: bat names

I was trying to write ‘like a bat out of hell’ in a fancy way and went to find a group name for bats – I genuinely thought they were all one genus, they’re very much not. reminds me that chiro~ means hand. Chirality – handedness. Bats by definition have hand-wings, or wing-hands.

The distinctive features of the Onychonycteris fossil also support the hypothesis that mammalian flight most likely evolved in arboreal locomotors, rather than terrestrial runners. This model of flight development, commonly known as the “trees-down” theory, holds that bats first flew by taking advantage of height and gravity to drop down on to prey, rather than running fast enough for a ground-level take off.

I know Wikipedia is not a source, but we aren’t in the academy right now.

Bat people are either excellent at names or terrible at names, and I can’t decide which. Gloomy tube-nosed bat is heroically evocative. And then you have big brown bat, big red bat, tiny yellow bat, which must have taken ooh months to come up with.

I like the Great evening bat, both because it sounds like a meme template (great evening bat says your eyeliner looks great and did you put a spare pair of socks in your bag?) and because its formal name is ia io. It’s the joint shortest name of any being, and the shortest name allowed.