Photographing the World’s Smallest Mammal

The Bumblebee Bat (Craseonycteris thonglongyai) Kitti’s Hog-nosed Bat

The Lonely Planet travel guide Thailand claims Sai Yok National Park is home to “some extremely rare animals.”

Merlin first came here in 1982 to photograph one of them: the world’s smallest mammal, the Bumblee Bat (Craseonycteris thonglongyai) aka Kitti’s Hog-nosed Bat. That was before he started his signature portrait gallery of all the bats of the world. He has returned to Sai Yok to complete the collection of all the world’s 19 families of bats.  

The Kitti’s Hog-nosed Cave is protected by a Buddha shrine.  Access to the cave is controlled by the monks. With their permission, we took our camera equipment inside to catch and photograph this tiny bat that weighs a third of a US penny’s_hog-nosed_bat.