The Flying Fox {Pteropus}

May 22, 2010 § Leave a comment

The Flying Fox {Pteropus}

The Flying fox or Fruit Bat, photographed through the wire mesh of a large cage at Lok Kawi Wildlife Park.

The Flying fox or Fruit Bat is a bat in the genus Pteropus, belonging to the Megachiroptera sub-order, the largest bats in the world. There are many sub-species in this genus.They live in the tropics and subtropics of Asia and a number of remote oceanic islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans.

The genus Pteropus goes back a long time. Fossils unearthed were dated 35 million years old. The notable difference in the fossil being the presence of a tail for stabilisation in early flight adaptation.

Pteropus do not possess echolocation. They do not have super-sonar like the microbats. However, they have well developed sense of smell and sight. Pteropus feed only on nectar, blossom, pollen and fruits. When it locates food, it often crash into the foliage and grabs for it. Feeding ranges can reach up to 40 miles.

Many species are threatened with extinction today. All Pteropus are listed in Appendix II (threatened) of CITES. (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora). {Condensed from wikipedia}.

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