Guide to the bats of Montserrat

Artibeus jamaicensis Chiroderma improvisum Brachyphylla cavernarum Noctilio leporinus
Ardops nichollsi Sturnira thomasi Monophyllus plethodon Molossus molossus
Tadarida brasiliensis Natalus stramineus Key to Roosts Key to Taxa

(Photo A. Hartpence)

(Photo C. Miller)

Funnel-eared Bat - Natalus stramineus

Very little is known about these extremely delicate bats.

IDENTIFICATION: Funnel-eared bats are certainly the smallest bats found in the region and are amongst some of the smallest bats in the world. They are most often captured in xeric habitats amongst desert scrub, but have alsobeen netted in wet forest. They can often be mistaken for a large moth given their fluttering, bobbing flight paths.

To date, funnel-eared bat roosts have only been found in dark caves, and then in the most remote (humid/protected) portions of a cave system. These bats roost individually and hang pendant from the roofs of caves, often spaced at 1-2m intervals. It is thought that this species' predilection for humid caves is in response to the risk of dehydration due to their very high surface-area/volume ratio and the very large expanses of wing membrane.

DIET: Very small flying insects

SIZE: Forearm length - (range 38-41mm); Mass - (range 5.7-6.3g).

No ASM Mammalian Species account exists as of yet for this particular species, however, the account for Natalus major may provide sufficient information for general purposes.

See Entry: Walker's Mammals of the World Online version 5.1, by Ronald Nowak, 1997