Wild life and nature of Samos, Ikaria & Fournoi

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Mammals

Long-fingered bat (Myotis capaccinii)

Description

Myotis capaccinii is a medium-sized bat in comparison to other bats. It is a trawling bat, meaning it has large feet for its body size. The adaptation of large feet affects their method of consuming food as, unlike other bats, trawling bats use their feet to scoop prey of water surfaces. This bat has a long muzzle and tragus. The coloration of the long-fingered bat is dark grey on the dorsal side, and lighter grey on the ventral underbelly.

Habitat

The bat resides in caves. There is seasonal variation in the type of cave selected by these bats. During the summer they favor warmer, underground sites such as mines, whereas. During the winter they prefer to roost at cooler sites. The long-fingered bat is usually found roosting in close proximity to areas with flowing water at which it can forage. These areas include canals, reservoirs and waterways.

Diet

The bat forages over and around areas of flowing water and wetlands. It is an insectivorous bat that mainly consumes insects and aquatic larvae. It may also feed on fish as another source of food besides insects depending on the location and season.

Protection Status

The bat is currently listed as "vulnerable" on the IUCN Red List. This is mostly due to their caves being used for tourism their feeding grounds being compromised by pollution and dam building as well as the general destruction of habitat.

Interesting facts

Surprisingly bats do not have hollow bones like birds do but normal mammalian bones, however they are very slender and delicate to reduce weight. The wing bones in particular are quite flexible. It also helps that bats’ wings are more aerodynamically efficient than those of birds, so they don’t need as much weight reduction to fly just as well.

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