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Published on Aug 27, 2011
Megabats constitute the suborder Megachiroptera, family Pteropodidae of the order Chiroptera (bats). They are also called fruit bats, old world fruit bats, or flying foxes. The megabat, contrary to its name, is not always large: the smallest species is 6 centimetres (2.4 in) long and thus smaller than some microbats. The largest reach 40 centimetres (16 in) in length and attain a wingspan of 150 centimetres (4.9 ft), weighing in at nearly 1 kilogram (2.2 lb). Most fruit bats have large eyes, allowing them to orient visually in the twilight of dusk and inside caves and forests.
Their sense of smell is excellent. In contrast to the microbats, the fruit bats do not use echolocation (with one exception, the Egyptian fruit bat Rousettus egyptiacus, which uses high-pitched clicks to navigate in caves).