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Lasiurus seminolus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA CHIROPTERA VESPERTILIONIDAE

Scientific Name: Lasiurus seminolus
Species Authority: (Rhoads, 1895)
Common Name(s):
English Seminole Bat
Taxonomic Notes: Subgenus Lasiurus, borealis species group.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Timm, B. & Arroyo-Cabrales, J.
Reviewer(s): Medellín, R. (Chiroptera Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
This species is listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining at nearly the rate required to qualify for listing in a threatened category.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Florida and Texas to Oklahoma and Virginia; Pennsylvania and New York (USA); Bermuda. N Veracruz (Mexico) (Simmons 2005).
Countries:
Native:
United States (Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: L. seminolus is a solitary bat species. Individuals usually roost alone and remain in the roost whenever the temperature is below 21°C. If the relative humidity increases, they are able to fly at lower temperatures. A sighting was reported at 20°C when the relative humidity was 38%. They do not hibernate, but do go into torpor. These bats fly throughout the year and have been spotted on warm days in the middle of winter. Seasonal migration does occur within their range in the southeastern United States. There are fewer seminole bats in the northern portions of their range during the winter, but in the south they are one of the most abundant bats active at that time of year. They have been known to join groups of migrating birds on southward migrations. No studies have yet been done to determine how they navigate their migration route. The possibilities include visual landmarks, smells, or winds. (Constantine 1958, Neuweiler 2000)
There have been no longevity studies on seminole bats. It has been noted that more females than males have been recorded in the older age class, which indicates a higher male mortality rate. If seminole bats survive the perils of youth, it is likely that they will live for many years. (Kunz and Racey 1998).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Seminole bats are insectivorous. They feed at dusk, while in flight, on flies, beetles, dragonflies, bees, wasps, and crickets. They are quick and direct when flying, feeding mostly near the tops of trees at about 6 to 15 m. However, it is not uncommon to see them over open ponds, along forest edges, or near lights, presumably where insects accumulate. Like most microchiropterans, seminole bats find their insect prey through echolocation (Genoud, 1990).
Generally, seminole bats are found in lowland forest stands of mixed deciduous and pine trees. Although several bats may be found hanging together, roosting alone is more common. They hang 1.5 to 6.1 m above the ground on the southwest side of trees, clinging to the inside of clumps of Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides), leaves, or loose bark. The area directly below the moss where they hang is clear of other branches. This allows these bats to drop down to begin their flight. The ground beneath them is covered with leaf litter and other organic debris. This reduces the amount of sunlight that is reflected on them when hanging.
Roosting is more common in pine trees, especially during parturition and lactation. The trees that are selected for roosting are taller and larger in diameter than other trees near the roost area. Selected trees are also tend to be near forest edges that permit easy flight paths. (Constantine 1958 and 1966, Barbour and Davis 1969, Menzel et al. 1998)
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Since these bats roost primarily in Spanish moss, the gathering of this moss could affect roosting behaviour. No studies have been done to determine whether there has been an impact, but educating moss collectors about these roosting requirements could help seminole bats (Walker 2002).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Research actions.

Citation: Timm, B. & Arroyo-Cabrales, J. 2008. Lasiurus seminolus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 24 November 2014.
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