Pteropus dasymallus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Pteropus dasymallus
Species Authority: Temminck, 1825
Common Name/s:
English Ryukyu Flying Fox, Ryukyu Flying-fox
Spanish Zorro Volador De Ryu-kyu
Taxonomic Notes: In Japan, four subspecies are recognized: P. d. dasymallus, P. d. daitoensis (Daito Islands), P. d. inopinatus (Okinawa Islands), and P. d. yayeyamae (Yaeyama Islands). The Taiwan subpopulation represents the subspecies P. d. formosus Sclater, 1873.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor/s: Heaney, L., Rosell-Ambal, G., Tabaranza, B. & Izawa, M.
Reviewer/s: Hutson, A.M., Racey, P.A. (Chiroptera Red List Authority), Chanson, J. & Chiozza, F. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Listed as Near Threatened because of a past population decline that was probably close to 30% over the last 15 years (three generations) due to hunting and habitat loss. The decline documented in the past is believed to have largely stopped in most parts of its range. Almost qualifies as threatened under criterion A2cd.
1996 Endangered
1994 Endangered (Groombridge 1994)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found in Taiwan, Japan and the Philippines. In the Philippines, it occurs in the small northern islands of Batan, Dalupiri, and Fuga, but it probably also occurs on other nearby islands, although not on Luzon (L. Heaney pers. comm. 2006). In Japan, it is found on the Osumi Islands (Kuchinoerabu), Tokara Islands (Nakano, Taira, Akuseki, Takara), Okinawa Islands, Yaeyama Islands (+ Aragusuku) and Miyako Islands (Tarama, Irabu, Miyako), Yaeyama Islands (Ishigaki, Taketomi, Kohama, Iriomote, Hateruma, Kuro, Hatoma, and Yonaguni), and Daito Islands.
Japan (Nansei-shoto); Philippines; Taiwan, Province of China
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The Philippines population probably comprises the largest number of individuals (L. Heaney pers. comm. 2006). In the Philippines, the species is reported to be common in forest where it is known to occur; however, the extent of its range has not been determined and there are knowledge gaps regarding its population status elsewhere (Ingle and Heaney 1992; Utzurrum 1992; Ross pers. comm.). There is no evidence that the population is in significant decline within the Philippines.
In Japan, the populations on Daito (P. d. daitoensis) are estimated to number more than 300; those on Kuchinoerabujima, Takarajima, Nakanoshima and Akusekijima number less than 200 individuals (P. d. dasymallus). There are no precise population estimates for the other subspecies, but the population size of yayeyamae is likely to be a few thousands and that of orii over 5,000.
There have been large reductions in the populations of Taiwan, and some possible local extinctions.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This is a forest species with a diet consisting mainly of figs. In Japan they roost throughout the islands, and have also been seen in urban areas, where they have planted the same fruiting trees that this bat prefers as a food source. It rests during the day either alone or in small groups hanging from the branches of trees.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There is some hunting of the Philippines populations. It is facing substantial threat from hunting on Babuyan Claro, where it is a favoured delicacy amongst locals. However, it does not appear to be hunted in Dalupiri because of the lack of air guns in the community (Oliveros et al. 2004).
In Japan, habitat loss remains a problem on most islands, although on some islands (Miyako and Daito islands), populations have been increasing as the bats have been recolonizing areas where fruiting trees have been planted in urban areas. Farmers have been placing nets over the top of citrus crops (in order to avoid damage by the fruit bats and birds), with the result that some bats have been accidentally trapped. Several animals have been electrocuted on power cables on the Daito Islands.
In Taiwan it has been hunted for food in the past, and populations have been reduced to the point that it is considered threatened.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species was included in Appendix II of CITES in 1990. In Japan, dasymallus and daitoensis have been designated as Natural Monuments and the latter also as a Domestic Endangered Species. P. d. daitoensis and P. d. dasymallus are listed as Endangered (EN) in the Japanese Red List (2007). In the Red List of China it is considered Endangered.
Citation: Heaney, L., Rosell-Ambal, G., Tabaranza, B. & Izawa, M. 2008. Pteropus dasymallus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <>. Downloaded on 18 April 2014.
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