Bats in West Virginia

West Virginia is home to 14 species of bats. The largest is the Hoary bat with a wingspan of 13-16 inches, while the smallest is the Tricolored bat with a wingspan of 7-9 inches. The one people are most likely to encounter is the common Big Brown Bat, which often roosts inside buildings.

Bats in West Virginia (WV)

Different Types of Bats in West Virginia

Vesper Bats (Vespertilionidae)

  • Big Brown Bat
  • Eastern Red Bat
  • Eastern Small-footed Myotis
  • Evening Bat
  • Gray Bat
  • Hoary Bat
  • Indiana Bat
  • Little Brown Bat
  • Northern Long-eared Bat
  • Rafinesque’s Big-eared Bat
  • Silver-haired Bat
  • Townsend’s Big-eared Bat
  • Tricolored Bat
  • Virginia Big-eared Bat

Places To Go Bat Watching in West Virginia

West Virginia is home to several caves where bats can be found. The best time to see them is dusk when they emerge from these caves to hunt.


1. Are there endangered species of bats in West Virginia?

Yes, three of West Virginia’s native bats – the Gray Bat, the Virginia Big-eared Bat, and the Indiana Bat – are considered endangered within the state. 

2. Do bats in West Virginia undergo hibernation?

Some bats, like the Virginia Big-eared Bat and the Eastern Small-footed Myotis, enter a state of hibernation when it gets colder. 

3. Is it illegal to kill bats in West Virginia?

Yes, killing bats in West Virginia is illegal as they are classified as nongame species. An expert should be called to remove a bat that has entered a building.

4. Do any species of bat living in West Virginia migrate in the winter?

Bats that live in trees, like the Eastern Red Bat and the Silver-haired Bat, will often migrate to a different state down south where winter is warmer.

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