Choeronycteris mexicana (Mexican Long-tongued Bat)

Weight:10-25 grams

Wingspan: 33-38 centimeters

[Call File Not Yet Available]



Includes the southwestern United States, most of Mexico, and Central America.

Ecology and Behavior:

This is a rather large (forearm 43 - 49 mm) bat with a long, slender nose. It occupies a variety of vegetative habitats ranging from arid thorn shrub to tropical deciduous forest and mixed oak-conifer forest. It is believed to migrate seasonally to take advantage of suitable sources of food. Buildings and culverts occasionally are occupied, but caves and abandoned mines seem to be favored as daytime roosts; these bats hang in dimly lit areas near the entrances, so even small caves are occupied. In roosts, they do not cluster, but hang 2-5 centimeters (1-2 inches) apart, usually by only one foot, so that they can rotate 360° to detect predators. They are extremely wary, thus easily disturbed, and readily leave the roost. They seem to prefer flying out into open daylight rather than retreating deeper into large shelters. In flight, the wings make a swishing sound similar to that produced by long-nosed bats.

Food Habits:

Foods include fruits, pollen, nectar, and insects.

Reproduction and Longevity:

One baby is born in June or July, but parturition may be as late as September in Mexico. As with many other bats, the fetus is about 30% of mother's weight. Parturition takes about 15 minutes. Babies are born in a remarkably advanced state of development and are surprisingly well furred. A mother may carry her rather large baby while foraging.

Status of Populations:

This species is rare in the United States and is considered to be of special concern.

Text, in its original form, provided by T. L. Best, M. J. Harvey, and J. S. Altenbach. Printed spectrographs provided by M. J. O'Farrell. Distribution maps, call descriptions, and AnaMusic sound clips produced by W. L. Gannon. Accounts assembled by T. C. Sanchez-Brown