Vampire bats ‘French kiss with blood’ to form lasting bonds

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Discussion posted by: Arye ben-Shaoul

Vampire bats establish friendships by sharing regurgitated blood with their neighbours in a “kind of horrifying French kiss”, a new study says. Researchers observing the mammals said their sharing behaviours appeared to be an important aspect of their bonding. If bats go three days without eating, they can die of starvation, so sharing the blood can be a life-saving act. The study, published in the journal Current Biology, aimed to determine how the species developed relationships. It found that when the vampire bats became isolated in a roost, pairs unfamiliar with one another – but in close proximity – would begin grooming, then “mouth-licking” before swapping food.