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Pteropus ornatus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA CHIROPTERA PTEROPODIDAE

Scientific Name: Pteropus ornatus
Species Authority: Gray, 1870
Common Name(s):
English Ornate Flying Fox
French Roussette Rousse
Spanish Zorro Volador De Las Islas De La Leal

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2cd; B1ab(ii,iii,iv,v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Brescia, F.
Reviewer(s): Lamoreux, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team), Racey, P.A., Medellín, R. & Hutson, A.M. (Chiroptera Red List Authority)
Justification:
Listed as Vulnerable because a population decline in excess of 30% over the last three generations (i.e., 30 years), inferred from over-exploitation, habitat destruction and degradation, and loss of known roosting sites. In addition, its extent of occurrence is less than 20,000 km2, its distribution is severely fragmented, and there is a continuing decline in: area of occupancy, extent and quality of its habitat, number of locations, and the number of mature individuals.
History:
1996 Vulnerable (Baillie and Groombridge 1996)
1996 Vulnerable
1994 Indeterminate (Groombridge 1994)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The Ornate Flying Fox is endemic to New Caledonia where it has been recorded from the islands of Lifou, Maré, and New Caledonia (Flannery 1995). It appears to range from sea level to around 1,066 m asl. (Sanborn and Nicholson 1950, as referenced in Flannery 1995).
Countries:
Native:
New Caledonia
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species was once considered to be common. The number of Ornate Flying Foxes, however, has dramatically declined over the last 50 years due to over-hunting, including local commercial harvesting (Brescia 2007). Flannery (1995) reports that its numbers were also drastically reduced in the 1960s by the spread of a disease.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species formerly roosted in large numbers in trees. It is believed to forage nocturnally and have a strong fidelity to roost sites (Flannery 1995; Brescia 2007). Roosts have been recorded at the upper end of dense tropical moist forest growing in gullies on slopes (Flannery 1995). It appears as though the species does not breed until its second year, after which females give birth to a single young.
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is important for traditional use.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threat to the survival of this species appears to be local hunting for food and traditional use. Legislation providing a short fruit bat hunting season is in place (the hunting season only includes the weekends of April, with a quota of 5 bats per hunter), however, reports of substantial illegal hunting and commercial harvesting of fruit bats is widespread (Brescia 2007).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species has been recorded in protected areas. It is listed on Appendix II of CITES. Local wildlife legislation prohibits the commercial trade in fruit bats and provides a lengthy closed season to hunting. There is a need to further enforce this legislation. Further surveys are needed to identify and protect important sites and habitat for this species. Ongoing studies into its population numbers and trends, degree of utilisation, current status, and ecology are being conducted by IAC (Institut Agronomique néo-Calédonien) (Brescia 2007).

Citation: Brescia, F. 2008. Pteropus ornatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 18 December 2014.
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