Nycteris – Slit-faced bats

These bats get their name from the depression in their skulls that runs down the middle of their face

Slit- or hollow-faced bats belong to a single genus, all having the characteristic slit from the middle of their forehead to their nose. The exact function of the slit is unknown. It is thought to assist in echolocation. However, Nycterids mainly use their well-developed ears to listen to sounds made by their prey when hunting.

They live in Southeast Asia and Africa. Their diet is varied and includes insects, spiders, and scorpions, with a larger species in the family feasting on frogs and even birds. Another defining feature of this family is the special T-shaped cartilage at the tips of their tails. No other bats or even other mammals have this feature.