Bat Embryonic Development : 2006

Photograph by

Dorit Hockman

About this image

Composite of three images showing embryos of the Black Mastiff Bat, Molossus rufus. The younger embryo is at left. These images were taken in a study of the development of the flight structures of the bat. The wings develop as the fingers lengthen and a membrane grows between them. However, in this species the edges of their ears also extend and join together forming a helmet-like structure that is thought to help with manoeuvrability. Black Mastiff Bats are well known for their fast aerobatic flight when hunting for insects. Each of these images was taken though a dissecting microscope at low magnification and captured on a digital camera. Trinity College, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom