Fruit Bat, Acerodon jubatus, Golden -crowned flying Fox, natural host for viruses
October 23, 2014
PLoS One. 2013 Nov 21;8(11):e79665. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0079665. eCollection 2013.
Foraging behaviour and landscape utilisation by the endangered golden-crowned flying fox (Acerodon jubatus), the Philippines.
de Jong C1, Field H, Tagtag A, Hughes T, Dechmann D, Jayme S, Epstein JH, Smith C, Santos I, Catbagan D, Lim M, Benigno C, Daszak P, Newman S.
PLoS One. 2013;8(12). doi:10.1371/annotation/67f7a1ef-d1bb-4752-a44e-beaca05a126b. Epstein, Jonathan [corrected to Epstein, Jonathan H].
Species of Old World fruit-bats (family Pteropodidae) have been identified as the natural hosts of a number of novel and highly pathogenic viruses threatening livestock and human health. We used GPS data loggers to record the nocturnal foraging movements of Acerodon jubatus, the Golden-crowned flying fox in the Philippines to better understand the landscape utilisation of this iconic species, with the dual objectives of pre-empting disease emergence and supporting conservation management. Data loggers were deployed on eight of 54 A. jubatus (two males and six females) captured near Subic Bay on the Philippine island of Luzon between 22 November and 2 December 2010. Bodyweight ranged from 730 g to 1002 g, translating to a weight burden of 3-4% of bodyweight. Six of the eight loggers yielded useful data over 2-10 days, showing variability in the nature and range of individual bat movements. The majority of foraging locations were in closed forest and most were remote from evident human activity. Forty-six discrete foraging locations and five previously unrecorded roost locations were identified. Our findings indicate that foraging is not a random event, with the majority of bats exhibiting repetitious foraging movements night-to-night, that apparently intact forest provides the primary foraging resource, and that known roost locations substantially underestimate the true number (and location) of roosts. Our initial findings support policy and decision-making across perspectives including landscape management, species conservation, and potentially disease emergence.
[PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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