SUBSCRIBE TO MY YOUTUBE CHANNEL & HELP SUPPORT BATS

African Straw-Colored Fruit Bats are Record-Breaking Flyers


African straw-colored fruit bats (Eidolon helvum) are able to fly greater distances than any other bat species. This enables them to successfully forage for food, while spreading seeds and pollen over wide-spread areas of Africa. (Photo : Flickr: Daniel Neal)

African straw-colored fruit bats (Eidolon helvum) are able to fly greater distances than any other bat species, a new study revealed. When competition for food sources increases and seasons change, the bats migrate further to reach ample hunting grounds. In doing so, the animals disperse seeds and pollen, which is vital for sustaining local ecosystems.

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology fitted African straw-colored bats with GPS-loggers to track the animals' flight patterns and discovered that the flyining mammel's traveling distances varied depending on season. The bats were more likely to fly further for food during the dry season than the wet season, according to a news release. Researchers suggest that these differences could be related to migratory behaviors in response to seasonal changes.
In order to better understand the relationship between seasonal population size and foraging behavior, researchers closely monitored the Accra colony of fruit bats. During the wet season, researchers found that most bats left Accra and migrated to northern savannas. However, some individuals were left behind and the colony inevitably became smaller. Therefore, there was less competition for food during this time. On the other hand, populations increased during the dry season and there was a much greater competition for food, according to the release.

Straw-colored fruit bats are one of the most common bat species found in Africa. Generally, the bats are found hanging upside down in the crowns of old mahogany trees during the day. But when nighttime rolls around, the mammals quickly blanket the sky in search for food. The animals have a wingspan of up to 80 centimeters and can travel upwards of 180 kilometers per night during the dry season, the researchers explained in their study.

Researchers also discovered that the bats' diet changed in response to seasonal variations. During the dry season, the bats mainly feed on nectar; however, they prefer to forage for nearby fruits during the wet season when there is less competition.

"The fruit available during the dry season may not be sufficient to feed all of the animals. It is also possible that they need certain nutrients during this season and for this reason prefer to feed on nectar," Jakob Fahr, study leader, explained.

After discovering the bats were record-holding travelers and could fly up to 90 kilometers when migrating, which is the greatest travel distance recorded for any known bat species, researchers were interested in how this affected local environments. They found that the bats transport seeds and pollen throughout different areas and act as "Gardeners of the African Forests." Conveniently, the bats even fly over forests that are threatened by deforestation and human land use.

"For this reason, fruit bats should not be primarily associated with infectious diseases. They fulfill important ecological roles, without which Africa's ecosystems would disappear," Fahr added.

Their findings were recently published in the journal PLOS ONE.

COMMENTS

BatsRule!/\^._.^/\Help Save WildLife
Name

Articles,67,Audio,15,Backyard,10,Barbed Wire,21,Bat Art,34,Bat Books,70,Bat Box,26,Bat Clothing,13,Bat Issues,490,Bats for Children,25,Bats for the Home,61,Electrocution,7,Events,33,info on bats,454,Jackie Sparrow,22,Microbats,409,Misc,63,Netting,31,Newsletter,4,Promoting,124,Rehab,60,Rehab 2011,1,Rehab 2012,19,Rehab 2013,10,Rehab 2014,6,Rehab 2015,103,Rehab 2016,99,Rehab 2017,9,Release Cage,2,RESCUE,59,Rescue 2012,3,RESCUE 2013,11,RESCUE 2014,8,RESCUE 2015,24,Rescue 2016,12,RESCUE 2017,1,Rob Mies,11,Shooting,2,Vegetation,23,Video,420,Virus,110,WebSites-Bat,46,
ltr
item
Megabats and Microbats: African Straw-Colored Fruit Bats are Record-Breaking Flyers
African Straw-Colored Fruit Bats are Record-Breaking Flyers
https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DDLnro9_XL8/VsPQQ5r95TI/AAAAAAACNZQ/aVm6Y77BCI0/s1600/African%2BStraw-Colored%2BFruit%2BBats%2Bare%2BRecord-Breaking%2BFlyers.jpg
https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DDLnro9_XL8/VsPQQ5r95TI/AAAAAAACNZQ/aVm6Y77BCI0/s72-c/African%2BStraw-Colored%2BFruit%2BBats%2Bare%2BRecord-Breaking%2BFlyers.jpg
Megabats and Microbats
http://www.batsrule.info/2016/02/african-straw-colored-fruit-bats-are.html
http://www.batsrule.info/
http://www.batsrule.info/
http://www.batsrule.info/2016/02/african-straw-colored-fruit-bats-are.html
true
4238281482117672351
UTF-8
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Readmore Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS CONTENT IS PREMIUM Please share to unlock Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy