Journal of Tropical Ecology

The bat fauna of Lamanai, Belize: roosts and trophic roles

M. B. FENTON  a1, E. BERNARD  a1, S. BOUCHARD  a1, L. HOLLIS  a2, D. S. JOHNSTON  a3, C. L. LAUSEN  a2, J. M. RATCLIFFE  a1, D. K. RISKIN  a1, J. R. TAYLOR  a1 and J. ZIGOURIS  a1
a1 Department of Biology, York University, North York, Ontario, M3J 1P3, Canada
a2 Department of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta AB9 2TN, Canada
a3 H. T. Harvey and Associates, 3150 Almaden Expressway, Suite 145, San Jose, California, USA


Thirty-six of the 70 species of bats known from Belize were recorded from the area around Lamanai, Orange Walk County: two in roosts and 34 in about 680 mist net hours that produced 560 captures. Day roosts used by 35 of the species were located using radio-tracking (Sturnira lilium, Platyrrhinus helleri, Centurio senex and Bauerus dubiaquercus) or general searching for roosts (Rhynchonycteris naso, Saccopteryx bilineata, Saccopteryx leptura, Dicli durus albus, Mimon bennettii, Micronycteris schmidtorum, Carollia brevicauda, Carollia perspicillata and Eptesicus furinalis). Data on the day roosts of 23 other species were determined from the literature. Most species reported from Lamanai (19) roosted in hollows, while others used foliage (6), tents (3), sheltered sites (2), crevices (2), open sites (1), and a few species used more than one type of day roost (hollows and crevices (1); hollows and foliage (1); hollows, foliage and tents (1)). The fauna consisted of 13 aerial foragers, 9 gleaners, 11 fruit/leaf eaters, one trawler, one flower-visitor and one blood-feeder. In day roost use and foraging behaviour, the Lamanai fauna did not differ significantly from that of Paracou, French Guiana, but both these locations differed from the bat fauna of Kruger National Park, South Africa, in foraging behaviour.

(Accepted November 21 2000)

Key Words: diversity; faunal structure; radio-tracking.