Cave bats of the central west coast and southern section of the Northwest Panay Peninsula, Panay Island, the Philippines

  • Mould A
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Abstract

Bats (order Chiroptera) form a large proportion of the species-rich mammalian fauna of the Philippines, and while the threats posed to these animals are well documented, for many species there is currently insufficient data to enable even a basic assessment of their conservation status. This is true for Panay Island, located in the Western Visayas region of the archipelago, where the need for surveying remaining suitable bat habitat has been identified as a priority. Between 5 April and 9 May 2011 a survey of 21 caves was undertaken on Panay, along the central section of the west coast of the island and within the southern section of the Northwest Panay Peninsula. Survey methods included visual observations, emergence counts and the recording of echolocation calls. Of the caves surveyed, 19 were found to support bats or show signs of their use, and at least 12 different species were observed. Three large maternity colonies of the Common Rousette Rousettus amplexicaudatus and two of the Dusky Roundleaf Bat Hipposideros ater were noted as having particular significance in terms of their conservation value for local populations. Potential maternity colonies of Asian Lesser False Vampire Megaderma spasma, Black-bearded Tomb Bat Taphozous melanopogon and Diadem Roundleaf Bat Hipposideros diadema were also observed but not confirmed. M. spasma was the most frequently encountered species, occurring in small numbers at five different caves. Other species/genera encountered in small numbers were the Arcuate Horseshoe Bat Rhinolophus arcuatus, Common Short-nosed Fruit Bat Cynopterus brachyotis, Philippine Sheath-tailed Bat Emballonura alecto, Yellow-faced Horseshoe Bat Rhinolophus virgo, Bent-wing (Miniopterus) and Myotis bat species, and at least one other Horseshoe (Rhinolophus) bat species. Ten of the caves were confirmed to support multiple bat species. An indication of current threats and recommendations for further survey and management priorities are provided.

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Mould, A. (2012). Cave bats of the central west coast and southern section of the Northwest Panay Peninsula, Panay Island, the Philippines. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 4(11), 2993–3028. https://doi.org/10.11609/jott.o3104.2993-3028

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