POSTED: 8:01 p.m. HST, Feb 8, 2011
The Hawaiian hoary bat could become the official land mammal for the state of Hawaii.
The Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee passed a bill 7-0 yesterday recognizing the endangered bat, which is the only land mammal whose subspecies is found exclusively in Hawaii.
The bat may not be as endearing as the state mammal, the Hawaiian monk seal, but it's getting support because of its uniqueness and rarity.
Republican Sen. Sam Slom has set up a website to encourage bestowing a state honor upon the hoary bat, saying its establishment in Hawaii represents one of the "most spectacular over-water colonization events in mammalian history."
The proposal next advances to the Senate Judiciary Committee.