Eptesicus isabellinus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Chiroptera Vespertilionidae

Scientific Name: Eptesicus isabellinus Temminck, 1840
Common Name(s):
English Meridional serotine
French Sérotine méditerranéen
Spanish Murciélago hortelano mediterráneo, Murciélago hortelano meridional
Taxonomic Source(s): Juste, J., Benda, P., Garcia-Mudarra, J.L. and Ibáñez, C. 2013. Phylogeny and systematics of Old World serotine bats (genus Eptesicus, Vespertilionidae, Chiroptera): an integrative approach. Zoologica Scripta 42(5): 441–457.
Taxonomic Notes: Considered as subspecies of Eptesicus serotinus or even synonymized with it. Nevertheless, recent molecular analyses first using mitochondrial DNA (Ibáñez et al. 2006) and later nuclear markers (Juste et al. 2013)  have shown that E. isabellinus is quite distant and isolated from E. serotinus and therefore, a full valid species as it was already suggested by Benda et al. ( 2004, 2006) although morphologically very similar to the former. The Lybian nominal population seems isolated from the Western population which could be differentiated as E. isabellinus boscai (Juste et al. 2013).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-06-26
Assessor(s): Juste, J.
Reviewer(s): Piraccini, R.

The species is locally abundant and widespread. Regional trends are difficult to determine due to the lack of reliable data but it seems that there are no reasons to consider the population to be declining globally.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:

The species is known to occupy the warmer southern half of the Iberian Peninsula and the Mediterranean fringe along the African coast from Morocco all the way to Lybia, from where it was originally described. The Iberian and Moroccan populations seem quite close genetically suggesting recent contacts through the Gibraltar Strait (Juste et al. 2009).

Countries occurrence:
Algeria; Gibraltar; Libya; Morocco; Portugal; Spain; Tunisia
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):1800
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


There are no estimates of the population figures for the species. Nevertheless, it is reported to be very abundant locally and in some areas of Southern Spain is considered one of the commonest species with density values up to 7.5 individuals per km2 (Ibáñez 2007). Lifespan is not well known but annual survival rate of adults was found to vary across colonies with an average value around 0.70 (Papadatou et al. 2011). This species is the main host of a differentiated strand of rabies virus in Iberia (Vázquez-Morón et al. 2011).

Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Population severely fragmented:Unknown
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:

The species uses mainly crevices in rocks as a natural roost. This characteristic has allowed this bat to make frequent use of bridges and other similar human-made constructions with crevices-like openings etc., being directly favoured by the availability of these frequent human constructions.

It is an ecologically plastic species found in a variety of habitats from semi-desert to temperate and subtropical dry forest, Mediterranean-type shrub-land, farmland and suburban areas. As in other serotines, favoured feeding areas include pasture, open woodland edge, gardens, and forested regions. It's a trophic generalist species, feeding on a variety of sources from beetles to moths and flies.

Most maternity colonies (between 20 and 100 females) are found in human constructions and buildings and naturally in rock fissures.

It is a sedentary species with annual movements of less than 40 km and females showing high fidelity to the roosts (Ibáñez 2007).


Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

No specific threats are known for the species although it can accumulate biocides due its feeding habits in agricultural areas (Guillén et al. 1991).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

No specific actions seem to be required to guarantee the species’ future. E. isabellinus is profiting from most of the man-made constructions that are being used more and more often as roosting places making the species quite common in urban areas.

Citation: Juste, J. 2016. Eptesicus isabellinus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T85200107A85200275. . Downloaded on 15 August 2018.
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