Hilly and forested country-side.
Caves, caverns and crevices in rocks. Up to 338-1230m."
Miniopterus schreibersii is foung in Southern Europe to Japan and the Solomon Islands, Philippines, northern Africa, Africa south of the Sahara, and northern and eastern Australia (Nowak, 1997).
Biogeographic Regions: palearctic (Native ); oriental (Native ); ethiopian (Native ); australian (Native )
It typically occurs at altitudes of up to 1,400 m asl (commuting up to 2,600 m asl).
Southern Europe and Morocco through the Caucasus and Iran to Japan, the Indian subcontinent and east to Australia; also sub-Saharan Africa.
Known presence in Protected Areas
India Meghalaya: Siju Wildlife Sanctuary."
Miniopterus schreibersii has a body length of 52 to 63 mm, a tail length of 50 to 60 mm, and a forearm length of 42 to 48 mm. Its color ranges from grey to yellowish brown (Grzimek, 1990).
Miniopterus schreibersii is a medium sized bat with extremely long fingers and correspondingly broad wings (Grzimek, 1990). The second bone of the longest finger is about three times as long as the first bone. When hanging by its hind feet, this lengthened terminal part of the third finger folds back on the wing (Nowak, 1997).
The body hairs of M. schreibersii stand erect. A small tragus is visible in the ears. This species has a short snout and hairs projecting form the upper surface of the head (Grzimek, 1990). The tail of M. schreibersii is completely enclosed within the interfemoral membrane and is proportionately longer than in many other bats of the same size (Nowak, 1997).
Range mass: 8 to 11 g.
Range length: 52 to 63 mm.
Other Physical Features: endothermic ; bilateral symmetry
Madagascar Mangroves Habitat
The endangered Malagasy sacred ibis (Threskiornis bernieri), is found in the Madagascar mangroves ecoregion as well as certain other western coastal Madagascar habitat and the Seychelles. These Madagascar mangroves shelter highly diverse mollusk and crustacean communities, while capturing sediment that threatens coral reefs and seagrass beds. Although up to nine mangrove tree species have been recorded, most of the Madagascar mangrove stands contain six species in four families: Rhizophoracae (Rhizopora mucronata, Bruguiera gymnorrhiza and Ceriops tagal), Avicenniaceae (Avicennia marina), Sonneratiaceae (Sonneratia alba) and Combretaceae (Lumnitzera racemosa).
Some ot the other notable avian associates of the Madagascar mangroves are: the Madagascar Heron (Ardea humbloti, VU), Madagascar Teal (Anas bernieri, EN), Madagascar plover (Charadrius thoracicus, VU), and Madagascar fish eagle (Haliaeetus vociferoides, CR). The Malagasy kingfisher (Alcedo vintsioides) is also thought to occur in these mangroves. This habitat is important for migratory bird species, such as Common ringed plover (Charadrius hiaticula), Crab plover (Dromas ardeola), Gray plover (Charadrius squatarola), African spoonbill (Platalea alba) and Great White Egret (Egretta alba).
A number of mammalian taxa are found in the ecoregion, chiefly lemurs, tenrecs and bats. The sole terrestrial apex mammalian predator of the ecoregion is the Malagasy civet (Fossa fossana), a Madagascar endemic.
Tenrecs occurring in the ecoregion are: Large-eared tenrec (Geogale aurita), the tiniest extant tenrec; Greater hedgehog tenrec found in the Madagascar mangroves, an insectivorous mammal; Lesser hedgehog tenrec (Echinops telfairi); and Tailless tenrec (Tenrec ecaudatus). Each of these tenrecs is endemic to Madagascar, save for the Tailless tenrec, which is also found on Comoros and a few other islands in the region.
Primates found in the Madagascar consist of several lemur species: the Endangered Verreaux's sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi), endemic to western and southwestern Madagascar; the Vulnerable Black lemur (Eulemur macaco); the Vulnerable Red-fronted lemur (Eulemur rufus); the Vulnerable Sambirano Bamboo Lemur (Hapalemur occidentalis); the Endangered Coquerel's Mouse-lemur (Microcebus coquereli), a Madagascar endemic; the Vulnerable Decken's sifaka (Propithecus deckenii), a western Madagascar endemic; Sambirano Woolly Lemur (Avahi unicolor), a northwestern Madagascar endemic; Pale-forked crown lemur (Phaner pallescens), endemic to western Madagascar; Fat-tailed dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus medius); and Grey mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus).
Bats occurring here are the Near Threatened Malagasy rousette (Rousettus madagascariensis), a cave rooster capable of navigating the airspace of rather dense intact forest; Vulnerable Madagascan fruit bat (Eidolon dupreanum); Near Threatened Commerson's roundleaf bat (Hipposideros commersonii); Near threatened long-fingered bat (Miniopterus schreibersi); Rufous trident bat (Triaenops rufus); Malagasy giant mastiff bat (Otomops madagascariensis), a Madagascar endemic; Malagasy White-bellied Free-tailed Bat (Mops leucostigma), endemic to Madagascar and the Comoros islands of Anjouan and Moheli; Malagasy slit-faced bat (Nycteris madagascariensis), a narrow endemic to the Irodo River Valley in northern Madagascar; Mauritian tomb bat (Taphozous mauritianus); Trouessart's trident bat (Triaenops furculus), endemic to Madagascar and the outer Seychelles atolls; Manavi Long-fingered Bat (Miniopterus manavi), endemic to Madagascar and Comoros; Grandidier's Free-tailed Bat (Chaerephon leucogaster); Robust yellow bat (Scotophilus robustus); Malagasy mouse-eared bat (Suncus madagascariensis); and Malagasy serotine (Neoromicia matroka). Flying foxes found in the ecoregion are: Madagascan flying fox (Pteropus rufus), an important seed disperser who mates whilst hanging upside down.
Other mammals found in the ecoregion are the Madagascan pygmy shrew (Suncus madagascariensis); The only Rodentia member in the ecoregion is the Dormouse tufted-tailed rat (Eliurus myoxinus).
There are a limited number of reptilian taxa found in the Madagascar mangroves: Snake-eyed skink (Cryptoblepharus boutonii); and aquatic apex predator Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus). Some sea turtles, primarily green turtle (Chelonia mydas, EN) and Hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata, CR), nest along the western coast within the Madagascar mangroves. The declining species Dugong (Dugong dugong, VU) is also found in the mangroves.
There is only one amphibian species present in the Madagascar mangroves: Mascarene ridged frog (Ptychadena mascareniensis).
There is particularly high diversity among the fish populations in the Madagascar mangroves,the families of which include: Mugelidae, Serranidae, Carangidae, Gerridae, Hemiramphidae, Plectrorhynchidae and Elopidae. The neighboring coral reefs that are associated with the mangroves have also been noted for extremely high fish diversity.
- C.MIchael Hogan & World Wildlife Fund. 2015. Madagascar mangroves. Encyclopedia of Earth. National Council for Science and Environment. Washington DC
- Hughes, R.H. & Hughes, J.S. 1992. A Directory of African Wetlands. UUCN, Gland Switzerland and Cambridge UK/UNEP, Nairobi, Kenya/WCMC, Cambridge, UK. ISBN: 2880329493
M. schreibersii has been found to roost in caves, rock clefts, culverts, caverns, and galleries (Grzimek, 1990; Nowak, 1997).
Studies of this species in India showed that the population of a given area tended to be centered in one large cave but that individuals spent part of their time in secondary roosts within a 70 km radius (Nowak, 1997).
Habitat Regions: tropical ; terrestrial
Terrestrial Biomes: savanna or grassland ; mountains
Other Habitat Features: caves
Habitat and Ecology
Hilly and forested country-side.
Caves, caverns and crevices in rocks. Up to 338-1230m."
Miniopterus schreibersii feeds on small beetles and insects. Feeding usually occurs at heights of 10 to 20 meters (Norak, 1997; Grzimek, 1990). Insects are caught by using echolocation.
Primary Diet: carnivore (Insectivore )
Threatened Vertebrate Associates in the Hindu Kush Alpine Meadow Ecoregion
The Hindu Kush alpine meadow has an expanse of some 10,900 square miles, situated in northeastern Afghanistan and northern Pakistan. Most of the lands lie within the Hindu Kush Mountain Range in the altitude bracket between 3000 to 4000 meters, and correspondingly most of the precipitation is in the form of snow. This ecoregion is classified within the Montane Grasslands and Shrublands biome.
This ecoregion manifests a low rate of vertebrate endemism; however there are ten special status mammals found here, ranging from the status of Endangered to Near Threatened. The Hindu Kush alpine meadow ecoregion consists of higher elevation terrain of moderate to severe slopes. Vegetation is often sparse or almost lacking, with resulting pastoral usage of low intensity grazing of goats and sheep in some areas. Soils are largely leptosols, but many areas are covered by large expanses of rock outcrop or rocky scree. In the limited areas of arable soils, wheat is sometimes farmed, although growing of opium poppies is the only cash crop. Most of the water available for plant and animal life is supplied by snowmelt. The Helmand River, Afghanistan's largest watercourse, represents the chief catchment within the ecoregion, with headwaters rising in the Hindu Kush Range, and eventual discharge to the endorheic Sistan Basin.
Special status mammals found in the Hindu Kush alpine meadow are: the Near Threatened argali (Ovis ammon), the Vulnerable Asiatic black bear (Ursus thibetanus), the Near Threatened European otter (Lutra lutra), the Near Threatened leopard (Panthera pardus), the Endangered markhor (Capra falconeri), the Near Threatened mountain weasel (Mustela altaica), the Near Threatened Schreiber's long-fingered bat (Miniopteris schreibersi), the Endangered snow leopard (Uncia uncia), the Near Threatened striped hyena (Hyaena hyaena) and the Endangered Moschus leucogaster. Special status birds in the Hindu Kush alpine meadow are represented by the Endangered Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopteris).
Life History and Behavior
Perception Channels: tactile ; chemical
Lifespan, longevity, and ageing
These bats reach sexual maturity at the age of one year (Grzimek, 1990). In a study in eastern Australia by Richardson (1977) they were found to be monestrous. Mating took place in the fall (late May to early June), with fertilization and development to the blastocyst stage immediately following. Implantation was delayed until August and births occurred in December. Each female usually has one offspring (Nowak, 1997).
The young are weaned at from 7 to 9 weeks of age. After the young are weaned females are once again ready for breeding (Grzimek, 1990; Nowak, 1997).
Breeding interval: These bats apparently breed once per year.
Breeding season: Mating occurs from late May to early June.
Range number of offspring: 1 to 2.
Average gestation period: 240 days.
Range weaning age: 42 to 90 days.
Average weaning age: 52.5 days.
Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization ; viviparous ; delayed implantation
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Miniopterus schreibersii
Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.
See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.
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Download FASTA File
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Miniopterus schreibersii
Public Records: 8
Specimens with Barcodes: 21
Species With Barcodes: 1
Miniopterus schreibersii is on the IUCN red list for low risk, near threatened species. However, it is not on the CITES or U.S. ESA lists.
This species is mainly endangered in western Europe but possibly through out the world. Colonies that had contained thousands of individuals have disappeared. Miniopterus schreibersii is especially sensitive to disturbances and may be locally eradicated if disturbed by human workers or tourists (Nowak, 1997). Destruction of habitat is a serious threat to these animals.
US Federal List: no special status
CITES: no special status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: near threatened
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
- 2004Least Concern
Extinction has occured in Germany and Ukraine. In Switzerland the species has declined since the 1960s and it is now close to extinction, and in Austria the hibernating population has declined from 2,500 to 1-2 individuals and all maternity colonies have been lost. In Romania, half of the roosts have disappeared since the 1960s. However, no decline has been recorded in large colonies in Croatia and Bulgaria. In 2002 mass mortalities of this species were reported for populations in France, Spain and Portugal; there are also historical records for such mortalities in Italy. A herpesvirus was found but not identified as the cause of the die offs. Hundreds of individuals were found dead in spring. Mortality up to 60% in one year (2002) was reported in France (Roué and Némoz 2002), and 40% mortality occurred in Spain during the same period including 1,000 dead individuals out of 6,000 in one colony. A number of sites were subsequently deserted. Outside Europe, it is the third most common bat species in Turkey, with large colonies of thousands of individuals (A. Karatas pers. comm. 2005). Populations in the Caucasus are considered Near Threatened (K. Tsytsulina pers. comm. 2005).
The cause of recent mass mortality events is unknown. In 2002 mass mortalities of this species were reported for populations in France, Spain and Portugal. There are also historical records for such mortalities in Italy, Australia and a possible incidence in Iran. A meeting was held at the 9th European Bat Conference to discuss these incidents. Veterinary investigations in Spain did not identify any disease as the cause of the die offs, and there is increasing belief that the die offs are caused by bad weather in late winter/early spring.
The species is found in many protected areas throughout its range.
Care is required when fencing caves to minimise mortality. Further research is required into the causes of the recent mass mortality events.
Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems
Bats can be extremely benefitial to humans. They eat many of the insects and pests that plague farmers and gardeners. This helps keep insects from over populating an area and it reduces the amount damage done to crops by these insects.
Positive Impacts: controls pest population
Change in quality.
Indirect information; inferred.
Common bent-wing bat
The common bent-wing bat, Schreibers' long-fingered bat, or Schreibers' bat (Miniopterus schreibersii) is a species of vesper bat in the family Vespertilionidae. It is a species of subtropical origin distributed throughout the southern Palearctic, Ethiopic, Oriental, and Australian regions. In Europe, it is present in the southern half from Iberia to the Caucasus, with the largest populations found in the warmer Mediterranean area.
The common bent-wing bat is a bat that forms major colonies and the longest period of torpor (hibernation) observed was about 12 days. These colonies can range anywhere from a few dozen or several million bats. Most of these colonies are formed in large caves or mines but they can also be found in other areas such as tunnels or ruins or other man made sites. In these roosting sites the common bent-wing bat establishes its colony in a "bell-shaped" hollow, which traps body heat and raises the temperature of the roost higher than the surrounding portions of the cave. This method of trapping warmth is used to reduce energy loss from shivering. Also, they will often enter hollows through small openings in order to better secure themselves from large predators during torpor. The common bent-wing bat migrates multiple times a year depending on weather of the roosting area; the length of these migrations can vary but the longest migration recorded was 833 km.
The common bent-wing bat is categorized as "Near Threatened" according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The explanation for the recent cause of these deaths is unknown but there have been many speculations as to why the mortality rate for this bat has increased. Researchers in Europe believe that the loss of underground habitats, the disturbance of their habitats, and pesticide use has caused an increase in deaths for the common bent-wing bat. In Australia researchers suspect that the high tissue levels of DDT (Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) they found in the common bent-wing bat, including the young ones that had not left the maternity roosts, was the cause of these deaths.
The common bent-wing bat can be found in the following countries:Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cameroon, China, Croatia, Republica Dominicana, possibly Ethiopia, France, Georgia, Gibraltar, Greece, Guinea, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, possibly Kenya, North Korea, South Korea, Laos, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Republic of Macedonia, Malaysia, Malta, Montenegro, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Russian Federation, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Syrian Arab Republic, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Vietnam, and Yemen.
- Schlitter, D. 2004. Miniopterus schreibersii. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Downloaded on 9 July 2007.
- Won, Byeong-o (원병오) (2004). 한국의 포유동물 (Hangugui poyudongmul, Mammals of Korea). Seoul: Dongbang Media. ISBN 89-8457-310-8.
- Fenton, M. Brock. Bats. New York: Facts on File, 1992. Print
- Kunz, Thomas H., and M. Brock Fenton. Bat Ecology. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago, 2003. Print.
- Zubaid, Akbar, Gary F. McCracken, and Thomas H. Kunz. Functional and Evolutionary Ecology of Bats. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2006. Print.
- Kunz, Thomas H., and Stuart Parsons. Ecological and Behavioral Methods for the Study of Bats. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 2009. Print
- Garin, I., J. Aihartza, P. T. Agirre-Mendi, J. T. Alcalde, J. De Lucas, O. De Paz, U. Goiti, and A. Artázcoz. "Seasonal Movements of the Schreibers' Bat, Miniopterus Schreibersii, in the Northern Iberian Peninsula." Italian Journal of Zoology 75.3 (2008): 263–270. Print
- Hutson, A.M., Aulagnier, S., Benda, P., Karataş, A., Palmeirim, J. & Paunović, M. 2008. Miniopterus schreibersii. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.1. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 27 September 2011
- Rodrigues, L., and J. M. Palmeirim. "Migratory Behaviour of the Schreiber's Bat: When, Where and Why Do Cave Bats Migrate in a Mediterranean Region?" Journal of Zoology 274.2 (2008): 116–125. Print
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