Volume 9 of Lynx’s magnificent series of The Handbook of the Mammals of the World is a heavyweight at several pounds and 1,008 pages. As the introduction states, the editors have saved the best for last. They had a problem as the book finally came out to in excess of 1,200 pages and it then had to be reduced as there is a limit to binding. I well remember seeing village markets in the virgin rainforest of Sulawesi (Indonesia) in 1985 selling rows of bats for meat, and researchers being delighted to pick up new species. Identification of new species has been going apace, and there are now 1,400 species of bats described in this tome from 21 recognised families of bats, representing almost a quarter of all mammal species in the world., such is the great diversity of the group. There are 1,422 distribution maps which are all very helpful. Bats are generally darkly coloured, but, as one interested in animal colour, it was interesting to note some are foxy and yellow. With a particular fascination in black and white combination colours, there is just one species, the Badger bat, or Pied Butterfly Bat, Glauconycteris superba which fits that description, and unusual in batsIt is illustrated also in my Black and White in Animals book (2016). The species is IUCN Red-listed, and in its west African distribution only known from less than ten individuals, such is the degraded nature of the habitat, a typical symptom of declining numbers.  As with the rest of the super volumes there is a range of amazing photographs (404) taken in the wild, and the 72 colour plates will assist with identification even though most bats fall into the category of being small and brown.