Daubenton's Bat


Daubenton's Bat
Daubenton's Bat
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Chiroptera
Family: Vespertilionidae
Genus: Myotis
Species: M. daubentonii
Binomial name
Myotis daubentonii
(Kuhl, 1817)

Daubenton's Bat, Myotis daubentonii, is a Eurasian bat with quite short ears. It ranges from Britain to Japan and is considered to be increasing its numbers in many areas.

The name commemorates the French naturalist Louis-Jean-Marie Daubenton.

Contents

Description

Daubenton's Bat is a medium sized to small species. The bat's fluffy fur is brownish grey on the back and silvery grey on the underside. Juveniles have darker fur than adults. The bats have reddish pink faces and noses, but the area around the eyes is bare. When the bat is agitated, the ears are held at right angles. The wings and tail membrane are dark brown.


Daubenton's Bat is typically 45 to 55 mm long, with an average wingspan of 240 to 275 mm. Daubenton's Bat weighs between 7 and 15 grams.

Lifespan

Daubenton's Bats can live for up to 22 years.

Habitat

The Daubenton's Bat is found throughout Britain, Europe, and as far as Japan and Korea. The bat is mostly found in woodlands and always chooses roosts close to water sources such as rivers or canals.

Summer colonies are formed in underground caves, tunnels, cellars, mines, and underneath bridges. These colonies are also always near water. Daubenton's Bat also hibernates in the same type of locations from September to late March or April.

Hunting and diet

Daubenton's Bat is insectivorous and uses echolocation to find prey and orientate itself at night. Bats emit sounds too high in frequency for humans to detect and interpret the echoes created to build a "sound picture" of their surroundings. Daubenton's Bat emits echolocation calls of frequencies between 32 and 85 kHz, though typical calls peak at 45 to 50 kHz and have a duration of 3.3 ms.[2][3]

The bats emerge at twilight to hunt for insects over the water. Their main diet consists of small flies, midges, mayflies, and moths. Daubenton's Bat often eats its prey while still in flight. A seven gram Daubenton's Bat often returns weighing 11 grams after a one hour feeding, increasing its body weight by 57%.

Breeding

Mating occurs in autumn and fertilisation takes place the following spring. Females gather in maternity colonies of 40 to 80 bats during June and July. Daubenton's Bat is able to fly three weeks after birth and reaches independence at 6 to 8 weeks of age.

Conservation

All bats in Britain are protected under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981. The bats are also protected by the Conservation Regulations of 1994.

Daubenton's Bat is an endangered species in Germany and Austria.

References

  1. ^ Chiroptera Specialist Group (1996). Myotis daubentonii. 2006. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. www.iucnredlist.org. Retrieved on 10 May 2006.
  2. ^ Parsons, S. and Jones, G. (2000) 'Acoustic identification of twelve species of echolocating bat by discriminant function analysis and artificial neural networks.' J Exp Biol., 203: 2641-2656.
  3. ^ Obrist, M.K., Boesch, R. and Flückiger, P.F. (2004) 'Variability in echolocation call design of 26 Swiss bat species: Consequences, limits and options for automated field identification with a synergic pattern recognition approach.' Mammalia., 68 (4): 307-32.

External links


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