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Mormoops megalophylla

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA CHIROPTERA MORMOOPIDAE

Scientific Name: Mormoops megalophylla
Species Authority: (Peters, 1864)
Common Name/s:
English Ghost-faced Bat, Peters's Ghost-faced Bat
Taxonomic Notes: The genus requires review and it may be split to two to five species (Davalos pers. comm.). New assessments should be made after this split. Three subspecies are currently recognized.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor/s: Dávalos, L., Molinari, J. Mantilla, H., Medina, C., Pineda, J. & Rodriguez, B.
Reviewer/s: Medellín, R. (Chiroptera Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
The species is very sensitive to all types of disturbance in the specialist caves in which it occurs. A minimum population size is required to maintain high cave temperature, which once reduced offspring do not survive. Besides that, it is listed as Least Concern because of its wide distribution, presumed large population, and occurrence in protected areas.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found throughout south Texas, south Arizona (USA), and Baja California (Mexico) south to northwest Peru and north Venezuela; Aruba, Curaçao, and Bonaire (Netherlands Antilles); It is also found on Trinidad; Margarita Island (Venezuela) (Simmons, 2005). It is discontinuous throughout its range in localised colonies (Molinari pers. comm.).
As a species complex was previously much more widespread, local extinctions have occurred throughout most of its range (Davalos pers. comm.). Its area of occupancy is relatively small (Molinari pers. comm.).
Countries:
Native:
Belize; Colombia; Ecuador; El Salvador; Guatemala; Honduras; Mexico; Peru; Trinidad and Tobago; United States (Texas); Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is locally common, and it is rarely in large groups (Emmons and Feer, 1997; Reid, 1997). The population of Venezuela is likely to occur in only ten caves (Molinari pers comm.). Found in hot caves (Rodriguez pers. comm.).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Occurs in specialised roosts in deep caves of karstic regions, this habitat is very rare (Molinari pers. comm.). A minimum population is required to maintain the temperature of the cave at around 40 centigrade, once the minimum threshold of individuals required to maintain the temperature. If the temperature is reduced, offspring do not survive (Molinari pers. comm.). In Ecuador occurs in cloud forest. At around 3,000 m in the Andes (Molinari pers. comm.).

This bat feeds on insects, chiefly moths, its prey usually has body lengths of 5 to 6 mm. It often forages over water, on forest edges, gaps, or open spaces. It roosts in deep caves, where it hangs singly, separated from their neighbors, in colonies of up to several thousand, but usually of only a few individuals. In north Amerca, large concentrations are found in caves in October and November, but disappear by January - such movements are not always seasonal. Females produce one young per year, between April to June. Nursing females roost separately for males and non-reproductive females (Ceballos and Galindo, 1984; Emmons and Feer, 1997; Reid, 1997; Rezsutek and Cameron, 1993; Villa-R., 1966).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Cave collapse can cause localised extinctions, cave vandalism occurs in many countries, they are very sensitive to disturbance (Davalos and Molinari pers. comm.). In Belize tourism in caves is causing problems (Miller pers. comm.). In Guatemala there are problems with fire in caves (Jose Cajas pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation and protection of cave habitat, although this will not guarantee protection of the species (Davalos pers. comm.). Found in protected areas.
Citation: Dávalos, L., Molinari, J. Mantilla, H., Medina, C., Pineda, J. & Rodriguez, B. 2008. Mormoops megalophylla. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 16 April 2014.
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