New research has demonstrated that vampire bats form long-term bonds and friendships. More specifically, vampire bats that share food and groom each other in captivity are more likely to stick together when they’re released back into the wild. While most previous evidence of ‘friendship’ in animals comes from research in primates, these findings suggest that vampire bats can also form cooperative, friendship-like social relationships. While not all relationships survived, the findings suggest that the bonds made in captivity weren’t just a byproduct of confinement and limited options.
Journal Reference: Ripperger and Carter et al. Vampire bats that cooperate in the lab maintain their social networks in the wild. Current Biology, 2019 DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2019.10.024