For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Mauritian Tomb Bat (Taphozous mauritianus)

I definitely have to consider that some bats are cute, like this one. In fact it reminds me of a cuddly toy and I am sure that most people are not going to agree with me on this one. Please click on the photographs to enlarge them and see what I mean LOL!!

Mauritian Tomb Bat (Tophozous mauritianus) family Emballonuridae

Identification pointers

This bat can be easily recognised when roosting by its alertness and crab-like behaviour when crawling sideways on a vertical wall. The fur is greyish above with pale white or cream below (figure 7), with the white just touching the chin where a dark spot is present in males. The face is relatively hairless and ears are usually held flat against the head, which is lifted from the roosting wall in a lizard-like fashion when disturbed. Wings are pointy and narrow with light-coloured membranes; they have a fast flying pattern, keeping low over grass veldts or open spaces.

Forearm length is 60-66 mm and its mass is approximately 27-36 grams10.

 This is a female.
 Roosting habits

They don’t roost inside roofs or dark hollows as most insect-eating bats do, but are rather found to roost on the outside of walls under the eaves of a roof or in large tree trunks, rondawels (chalets) and the trunks of Chinese fan palms and royal palms. Roosting colonies are generally small groups of about 5 bats though they may occasionally grow to about 30 individuals. They appear to be constantly vigilant and awake while roosting8, 10. Seasonal migrations are suspected but not proven, and the migration locations are unknown.

Two distinct birth periods are present: November - December and February – April, when a single young is born per birth period 8, 10.


Mauritian tomb bats are moth specialists, but will also feed on flying termites and other insects.

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