Journal of Zoology

Roosts used by the golden-tipped bat Kerivoula papuensis (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae)

M. Schulz a1
a1 School of Resource Science and Management, Southern Cross University, Lismore, NSW 2480, Australia


Use of roosts by the golden-tipped bat Kerivoula papuensis was investigated principally in the Richmond Range National Park, north-eastern New South Wales and Mt Baldy State Forest in north-eastern Queensland, Australia. Roosts were located primarily using radiotelemetry; although others were found by light tagging, visual location and nest searching techniques. In the main study site in the Richmond Range a total of 54 K. papuensis diurnal roosts were located, 96.5% occurring in the suspended nests of the yellow-throated scrubwren Sericornis citreogularis (Pardalotidae) (93%) and the brown gerygone Gerygone mouki (Pardalotidae) (3.5%). At Mt Baldy, K. papuensis displayed greater variation in day roost selection, although 73% were in S. citreogularis nests. In both sites, day roosts were confined to the lower stratum of rainforest with a small proportion in eucalypt tall open forest with a rainforest subcanopy. Diurnal roosts were located at distances varying from 20 to 1200 m to the nearest major vegetation ecotone, ranging from along watercourses upslope to ridgelines. Diurnal roosts were predominantly occupied by single bats, with a maximum group size of eight individuals. All roosts in hanging nests were modified by the presence of a basal hole. Strong circumstantial evidence was provided that K. papuensis modified these roost structures in a manner allied to tent-making bats. A single maternity roost was located in the hollow of a rainforest canopy tree, Flindersia australis (Rutaceae).

(Accepted May 17 1999)

Key Words: roost; Kerivoula papuensis; bird nests; roost modification; maternity roost.