Alarming decline in the sole European population of fruit bats: is human activity or climate responsible?
|Type||Article in Periodical|
|Magazine / Source||Animal Conservation|
|MU Faculty or unit|
|Keywords||Chiroptera Rousettus aegyptiacus monitoring bat roosts human disturbance|
|Description||Egyptian fruit bats (Rousettus aegyptiacus) occurring on the island of Cyprus represent the only fruit bat population in Europe and, simultaneously, one of the northern-most populations of any pteropodid bats worldwide. Here, we report an unprecedented precipitous decline observed between 2005 and 2010 when overall population size decreased by more than 80 per cent. The remaining population displays a sex ratio highly skewed toward males, a situation quite different from that observed before the decline as well as in populations examined in Turkey, Lebanon and Egypt.|