foto Piotr Ślipiński

Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 3-15, 1999     
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                              

The evolution of flight and echolocation in pre-bats:

an evaluation of the energetics of reach hunting

JOHN R. SPEAKMAN

Department of Zoology, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB24 2TZ, Great Britain E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.

Theories of the evolution of echolocation and flight in bats can be divided into models in which echolocation evolved first, flight evolved first, or where both evolved in tandem. The echolocation first hypothesis, as well as some of the flight first theories, commonly include a hypothetical phase where the pre-bat hunted by intercepting insects as they flew past a perch. I have called this behavior "reach hunting". In the current paper I have tried to reconstruct the likely energy gains that an animal could achieve when using this foraging strategy. The most favorable reconstruction suggests that it would take more than a day of continuous foraging to meet a reach hunters daily energy requirement, which probably explains why no extant animals hunt in this manner. This modelling suggests that the evolution of bats is unlikely to have included a period of reach hunting behaviour.

Key words: Chiroptera, evolution, flight, echolocation, aerial insects, reach hunting


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 17-29, 1999      
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS

Why does non-parental infanticide seem so rare in bats?

THOMAS H. KUNZ 1 and LUIS A. EBENSPERGER 1,2

1 Department of Biology, Boston University, Boston, MA 02215, USA; E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.
2 Present address: Departamento de Ecologia, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas,
Universidad Catolica de Chile, Santiago, Chile

Non-parental infanticide in mammals has been reported most frequently in carnivores, primates, and rodents. Evidence for infanticide in other mammalian taxa, including bats, is meager. In this paper we review conditions and mechanisms postulated for the evolution of infanticide in non-volant mammals in an effort to evaluate why this behavior appears to be so rare in bats. Infanticide in bats may be limited if the social conditions needed to benefit a perpetrator are absent. Alternatively, rarity of infanticide in bats may be explicable if there are insufficient opportunities to record its occurrence. Social conditions that favor the evolution of infanticide in non-volant mammals appear to exist in some chiropteran taxa, either to obtain nutritional benefits or as mechanisms to prevent misdirecting maternal resources to non-filial offspring. Among polygynous species, we would expect infanticide to occur in those taxa where a dominant male remains with females throughout the year. Notwithstanding, seasonal breeding, sexual segregation, and monoestry may be overriding factors that have largely selected against infanticide in many polygynous species. Theoretically, infanticide in 'monogamous' species could be expected if males would discriminate between their own and non-filial offspring.

Key words: Chiroptera, infanticide, monoestry, seasonal breeding, social conditions


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 31-45, 1999      
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS

Olfaction and the use of chemical signals in bats

JOHANNA BLOSS

Department of Biology, Boston University, Boston, MA 02215, USA; E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.

Animals must solve problems of how to navigate in their environment, locate resources, and communicate with other individuals. All bats (order Chiroptera) share the ability to fly, yet they exhibit an extraordinary diversity in terms of diet, roosting preferences, and social organization. The ecological pressures encountered by species are highly variable, thus different taxa may have evolved alternative mechanisms to gather and process information about their environment. In this review, I outline the uses of the olfactory system by bats. Chemical signals are used by some bats to detect, generally localize, and classify food resources. Special emphasis is given to associations that exist between feeding groups (frugivores, insectivores, sanguivores, etc.), the development of olfactory and other sensory systems, and the use of odor cues in foraging. The role of odors as individual, kin and group recognition cues is also discussed. During the past decade, an increased use of field and laboratory experiments, and the use of chemical analysis, have rapidly expanded our understanding of bat olfaction. However, more research is needed to identify the role of the vomeronasal organ and to further clarify the role of olfaction in a social context. The study of chiropteran chemical ecology also provides potential for researchers interested in the phylogenetic, foraging and social behaviors of bats.

Key words: Chiroptera, foraging, glands, kin recognition, main olfactory system, odor, vomeronasal organ


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 47-74, 1999      
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                                            

A review of the mouse-eared bats

(Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae: Myotis)

from Vietnam with significant new records

PAUL J. J. BATES 1, DITTE K. HENDRICHSEN 2, JOSEPH L. WALSTON 3, and BEN HAYES 4

1 Harrison Zoological Museum, Bowerwood House, St Botolph's Road, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN13 3AQ, Great Britain E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.
2 Sondermarken 30 st. th., 3060 Espergorde, Denmark
3 Stocks Barn West, Swaffham Prior, Cambridge, CB5 OHT, Great Britain
4 Muir of Knock, Pitylouish, Aviemore, Inverness-shire, PH22 1RD, Great Britain

Eight species of mouse-eared bat (Myotis) have recently been collected in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. Five of these (M. chinensis, M. ricketti, M. montivagus, M. ater and M. horsfieldii) are new to the country or little known; additional locality records are included for M. siligorensis, M. muricola and M. daubentonii. Diagnostic characters are reviewed for these and six further species of Myotis that have been previously recorded from the country. Data on national and world distributions, ecology and conservation status are included, as well as a key to species based on external, cranial and dental characters.

Key words: Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae, Myotis, Vietnam, systematics, distribution, ecology


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 75-79, 1999     
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                                

First fossil record of Amorphochilus schnablii

(Chiroptera: Furipteridae), from the late Quaternary of Peru

GARY S. MORGAN 1 and NICHOLAS J. CZAPLEWSKI 2

1 New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, 1801 Mountain Road, NW, Albuquerque, NM 87104, USA; E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.
2 Oklahoma Museum of Natural History and Department of Zoology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019, USA

A mandible with M1-M3 and associated right and left humeri from a late Quaternary deposit near Palpa in southwestern Peru are identified as remains of the rare bat Amorphochilus schnablii (Chiroptera: Furipteridae), the first fossil record of this species. The combination of characters observed in these fossils can be found only in Amorphochilus, including: very small size, slender mandibular ramus, weak mandibular symphysis, anteriorly rotated ascending ramus, small size of the lower canine, morphology of the lower molars, small rounded humeral head, laterally offset distal articular surface of the humerus, and a prominent distal spinous process on the distal humerus separated from the large medial process by a deep rounded notch. Amorphochilus schnablii currently inhabits the arid Pacific coastal region of southern Ecuador, Peru, and northern Chile. This species is one of at least seven bats that are endemic to the Atacama Desert. The endemism among Atacama Desert bats probably reflects their early arrival in the region (perhaps as early as the Miocene), subsequent isolation on the western side of the uplifting Andes, and adaptation to a desert environment.

Key words: fossil, Amorphochilus, Furipteridae, Quaternary, Peru


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 81-92, 1999     
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                                             

The superior olivary complex of the vampire bat,

Desmodus rotundus (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae)

NOBUYUKI KUWABARA and KUNWAR P. BHATNAGAR

Department of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY 40292, USA; E-mail of NK: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.

The vampire bat, Desmodus rotundus, echolocates with high frequency orientation sounds and also uses excellent low frequency passive hearing for its characteristic sanguivorous behavior which requires accurate sound localization. Cytoarchitecture of the superior olivary complex (SOC) in the auditory brainstem of this species was studied to examine the morphological characteristics of the lower auditory center, which may reflect the animal's acoustic capabilities. Serial sections through the lower brainstem, stained for both cells and associated fibers, revealed that the SOC comprises three major nuclei seen in most mammalian species. It is shown that the medial superior olive (MSO) consists of sizable, lateral and ventromedial subgroups of primarily fusiform cells, together presenting a characteristic J-shaped configuration. Each of these components has fairly distinct cell column in its core. Another nucleus with large multipolar cells mixed with other cell types is also recognized dorsal to the shorter, ventromedial part of the MSO and presumed to be comparable with the superior paraolivary nucleus of rodents. These results indicate that the SOC of the vampire bat appears similar to that of ground-dwelling mammals that use low frequency hearing and posses highly differentiated cell column in the MSO. The definitive characterization of these nuclei awaits extensive tract-tracing and physiological studies.

Key words: vampire bats, Desmodus rotundus, superior olivary complex, cytoarchitecture, lateral and medial superior olivary nuclei, sound frequency


 Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 93-103, 1999     
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                                           

Intraspecific variation in wingspan and echolocation call flexibility might explain the use of different habitats by the insectivorous bat, Miniopterus schreibersii (Vespertilionidae; Miniopterinae)

DAVID S. JACOBS

Department of Zoology, University of Cape Town, Private Bag, Rondebosch 7701,
South Africa E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.

On the basis of its long narrow wings, Schreibers' long-fingered bat (Miniopterus schreibersii) has been characterized as a species, which uses rapid flight in open spaces. Until now, observations of the foraging behavior of this species have supported this view. However, its long narrow wings are combined with relatively low wing loading suggesting that it might be capable of the slow manoeuvrable flight characteristic of species that forage within dense vegetation (i.e. in clutter). At De Hoop Nature Reserve in South Africa, M. schreibersii were trapped in dense vegetation as well as in open areas, prompting my investigation into the morphological basis for the ability of this species to use both kinds of space. The wing parameters and echolocation calls of individuals that were captured in open areas were compared with those that were captured in clutter. Bats captured in clutter had shorter wingspans and therefore lower aspect ratios than individuals captured in open space. A shorter wingspan enables greater manoeuvrability in the confined spaces associated with clutter. In accordance with theoretical predictions, individuals flying in open space used echolocation calls of longer duration and lower mean maximum frequency than individuals flying within clutter. The longer, lower frequency echolocation calls used by bats in open spaces increases the range at which they detect insect prey, which should allow more time to react at the rapid flight speeds used in open space. The use of both open and cluttered spaces in this species thus appears to be based on intraspecific variation in wingspan and individual flexibility in echolocation calls.

Key words: insectivorous bat, Miniopterus, Vespertilionidae, wing morphology, intraspecific variability, echolocation flexibility, habitat use


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 105-112, 1999     
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                                            
Surveying bat communities: 
a comparison between mist nets and
the Anabat II bat detector system

KEVIN L. MURRAY, ERIC R. BRITZKE, BRAD M. HADLEY, and LYNN W. ROBBINS1

Department of Biology, Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield, MO 65804, USA
1 Corresponding author: E-mail: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.

A survey of bat communities was conducted in Missouri during the summer of 1998 using both mist nets and Anabat. Mist nets provide valuable information about population demographics and species diversity within bat communities. However, they can yield biased samples of bat community activity and may cause undue stress to captured bats. The use of ultrasonic bat detectors like Anabat can ameliorate some of these problems. Bat detectors are relatively easy to set up, require no direct contact with bats and can sample a wider variety of habitats. To test the relative merits of these two methods, we sampled a variety of habitats including ponds, streams, and flyways using Anabat and mist nets in a paired design. This allowed for the simultaneous sampling of bat community activity necessary for direct comparison. Echolocation calls recorded by the Anabat were identified using a discriminate function analysis model based upon a library of known call sequences. Overall, values for species richness were significantly higher for Anabat II than for mist nets. Species richness was consistently higher for Anabat for all habitats and seven individual species and one species group was detected more frequently with Anabat than with mist nets.

Key words: Chiroptera, Anabat, mist nets, method comparison, acoustic identification, echolocation


Acta Chiropterologica, 1(1): 113-123, 1999     
PL ISSN 1508-1109 copyright Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS                           

Long-term changes in the number of bats in the largest man-made hibernaculum of the Czech Republic

ZDENEK ŘEHAK and JIŘÍ GAISLER

Department of Zoology and Ecology, Masaryk University, Kotlářská 2, 611 37 Bmo, Czech Republic E-mail of ZŘ: Ten adres pocztowy jest chroniony przed spamowaniem. Aby go zobaczyć, konieczne jest włączenie w przeglądarce obsługi JavaScript.

The abandoned mines "copyrightimon and Juda" are situated at the elevation of 900 m in the Jeseníky Mts. (50°03'N, 17°18'E). As a bat hibernaculum the locality was discovered in December 1970 and since 1971 a bat census has been carded out mostly once a year, usually in February. The maximum number of hibernating bats (1,040) as well as bat species (12) within one check was recorded in February 1998. During the whole period, 14 bat species were found inside the hibernaculum. In 1970-1979 a slight decrease in the total number of hibernating bats was recorded. In 1980-1989 bat numbers slightly increased and since 1990 they have significantly increased. For the whole time span, 1970-1999, a significant increase in numbers was recorded in the following species: Myotis myotis, M. daubentonii, M. brandtii, Eptesicus nilssonii and Barbastella barbastellus. In the hibernaculum, B. barbastellus and M. myotis are the dominant species, making about 70% of the whole community. Further species characteristic of this hibernaculum, compared to other hibernacula in the Czech Republic, are E. nilssonii and M. brandtii. Newly discovered relatively warm corridors have been checked since 1994. Rhinolophus hipposideros and Myotis emarginatus are regular hibernants there. The locality harbours a varied bat community including both psychrophilous and thermophilous species.

Key words: Vespertilionidae, Rhinolophidae, bat hibernaculum, changes in numbers, species dominance

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