Seasonal variation in the diet of the Indian pygmy bat, Pipistrellus mimus, in southern India

Citation
Jo. Whitaker et al., Seasonal variation in the diet of the Indian pygmy bat, Pipistrellus mimus, in southern India, J MAMMAL, 80(1), 1999, pp. 60-70
Citations number
33
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Animal Sciences
Journal title
JOURNAL OF MAMMALOGY
ISSN journal
0022-2372 → ACNP
Volume
80
Issue
1
Year of publication
1999
Pages
60 - 70
Database
ISI
SICI code
0022-2372(199902)80:1<60:SVITDO>2.0.ZU;2-B
Abstract
We evaluated seasonal dietary variation of the Indian pygmy bat, Pipistrell us mimus, from southern India, by collecting biweekly fecal samples from be neath a maternity roost for 1 year and comparing these samples with insects collected using a light trap on the same dates. Our analyses indicate that P. mimus fed on coleopterans (26.3% volume), dipterans (20.4%), homopteran s (17.5%), lepidopterans (13.6%), formicids (10.5%), hemipterans (5.7%), an d isopterans (5.1%) and thus are generalized feeders. One unidentified scar abaeid species made up much of the coleopteran material and was abundant in the diet of P. mimus from late April through late August. Formicid alates were consumed throughout the year but were especially important from late J uly through September. Isopteran alates were important in September and Oct ober. Relative proportions of insects that were eaten differed significantl y from insects captured in a light trap. In other studies, investigators in terpreted such differences as evidence of selection; however, we argue that most insect traps do not provide reliable data on availability and that ba ts may feed in other areas than where the insects are captured. Our results indicate that greater than or equal to 20 fecal pellets are needed in any one sample to determine important dietary items eaten by this species, alth ough this sampling protocol Likely overlooks minor food items.