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Pteropus yapensis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA CHIROPTERA PTEROPODIDAE

Scientific Name: Pteropus yapensis
Species Authority: Anderson, 1908
Common Name(s):
English Yap Flying Fox
Taxonomic Notes: Some authors consider Pteropus yapensis to be a subspecies of Pteropus mariannus (e.g., Mickleburgh et al. 1992, Wiles 2005).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable D2 ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Wiles, G., Helgen, K. & Allison, A.
Reviewer(s): Lamoreux, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team), Racey, P.A., Medellín, R. & Hutson, A.M. (Chiroptera Red List Authority)
Justification:
This species is listed as Vulnerable because it is known from only a single location in terms of its vulnerability to a single catastrophic event (i.e., typhoon). Population numbers increased in the 1980s and 1990s following protection; the current population is unknown. Were commercial hunting for export resumed, a typhoon to strike, or a sudden increase in habitat loss this species would likely qualify as Endangered or Critically Endangered.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is endemic to the four adjacent small main islands of Yap in the Federated States of Micronesia.
Countries:
Native:
Micronesia, Federated States of
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population in 1981 was estimated to be 1,000 animals (Wiles and Payne 1986), and between 2,500-5,000 animals in 1986 (J. Engbring, unpubl. data in Wiles 1992). Although there are no current population estimates, numbers had increased even further by the early 1990s following protection (G. Wiles pers. comm.).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is found in forest, mangroves, and agroforest. Although there is virtually no primary forest remaining on the islands, there is significant secondary forest and agroforest, which this species utilizes. It reproduces throughout the year (Mickleburgh et al. 1992).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The population of this species was drastically reduced during the late 1970s through commercial hunting for export of animals to Guam and the Northern Marianas for the luxury food market. It is estimated that 23,410 bats were imported from Yap to Guam between 1975 and 1989 (Wiles 1992). The species is currently threatened by subsistence hunting for local use that continues despite the 1981 ban, by the impacts of tropical typhoons, and by minor amounts of deforestation (E. VanderWerf pers. comm.; G. Wiles pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is listed on Appendix I of CITES. Continued enforcement of export bans of this species is necessary to aid recovery. It is protected by domestic legislation banning all hunting since 1981. The species is not present in any protected areas. Local awareness programmes are needed to emphasize the importance of wildlife resources. Important sites for roosting and foraging should be identified and protected (Mickleburgh et al. 1992).

Citation: Wiles, G., Helgen, K. & Allison, A. 2008. Pteropus yapensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 20 December 2014.
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