An old photo of a gigantic bat in the Philippines has recently making rounds on social media after it resurfaced on Twitter, leaving social media users stunned.
The picture appears to show a “human-sized” bat hanging from a wire outside a building.
Though it went viral on Reddit in 2018, the photograph began gaining attention again last month when Twitter user ‘@AlexJoestar622’ shared it on the microblogging platform.
“Remember when I told y’all about the Philippines having human-sized bats? Yeah, this was what I was talking about,”
Remember when I told y'all about the Philippines having human-sized bats? Yeah, this was what I was talking about pic.twitter.com/nTVIMzidbC
— Alex☔ (@AlexJoestar622) June 24, 2020
So far, the image has garnered a whopping 2.6 ‘likes’ and hundreds of comments on Twitter.
Many branded the said scary. However, others remained skeptic and raised doubts about the picture’s authenticity.
The picture, however, is not actually fake.
According to fact-checking website Snopes, the photograph truly depicts an animal that exists in the real world.
While there is some confusion over the species of bat photographed, the general consensus is that the picture shows a giant golden crowned flying fox.
The type of bat shown on the image is also known as the golden-capped fruit bat,. According to several sources, this species of megabat is endemic to the Philippines.
The giant golden crowned flying fox can have a wingspan of up to 5.5 feet, but its body only grows to about a foot in height.
This makes this fruit-eating bat bigger than regular bats. However, they do not come human sizes as claimed by the viral tweet.
Instead, trick photography was used to make the bat appear bigger than it actually is, reports the Daily Mail.
The picture is an example of forced perspective photography – a photography technique which employs optical illusion to make objects appear larger, smaller, closer or further away than they actually are.
One Twitter user, who said he was from the Philippines, confirmed that these bats are not actually human-sized.
“I can confirm this, they have a huuuuuge wingspan but the bodies are not really that big, more or less like the same body as a medium (bit smaller) sized dog,”
He also added that despite of their appearance, these species are actually gentle in nature.
What can you say?