Great Himalayan Leaf-Nosed Bats Produce Different Territorial Calls to Respond to Sympatric Species and Non-Living Objects.
ABSTRACT: Territorial signals are important for reducing the cost of territory defense. Normally, male animals will produce keep-out signals to repel intruders from entering their territory. However, there is currently no evidence that bats can adjust their territorial calls to respond differently to sympatric species or non-living objects. In this study, we simulated the process of territory defense in male Great Himalayan leaf-nosed bats (Hipposideros armiger) toward two sympatric species (Hipposideros pratti and Rhinolophus sinicus) and four different non-living objects (a fur specimen of H. armiger, a bat model, a speaker, and a speaker with playback of H. armiger echolocation calls) to investigate their acoustic responses. There were significant differences in the territorial call complexity, syllable rate, and syllable ratio produced by H. armiger under the different experimental conditions. Our results confirmed that bats can adjust their territorial calls to respond to different sympatric species and non-living objects. The results will further our understanding of animal cognition and interactions among bat species from an acoustic perspective.
Project description:Laryngeally echolocating bats avoid self-deafening (forward masking) by separating pulse and echo either in time using low duty cycle (LDC) echolocation, or in frequency using high duty cycle (HDC) echolocation. HDC echolocators are specialized to detect fluttering targets in cluttered environments. HDC echolocation is found only in the families Rhinolophidae and Hipposideridae in the Old World and in the New World mormoopid, Pteronotus parnellii. Here we report that the hipposiderid Coelops frithii, ostensibly an HDC bat, consistently uses an LDC echolocation strategy whether roosting, flying, or approaching a fluttering target rotating at 50 to 80 Hz. We recorded the echolocation calls of free-flying C. frithii in the field in various situations, including presenting bats with a mechanical fluttering target. The echolocation calls of C. frithii consisted of an initial narrowband component (0.5±0.3 ms, 90.6±2.0 kHz) followed immediately by a frequency modulated (FM) sweep (194 to 113 kHz). This species emitted echolocation calls at duty cycles averaging 7.7±2.8% (n?=?87 sequences). Coelops frithii approached fluttering targets more frequently than did LDC bats (C.frithii, approach frequency ?=?40.4%, n?=?80; Myotis spp., approach frequency ?=?0%, n?=?13), and at the same frequency as sympatrically feeding HDC species (Hipposideros armiger, approach rate ?=?53.3%, n?=?15; Rhinolophus monoceros, approach rate ?=?56.7%, n?=?97). We propose that the LDC echolocation strategy used by C. frithii is derived from HDC ancestors, that this species adjusts the harmonic contents of its echolocation calls, and that it may use both the narrowband component and the FM sweep of echolocations calls to detect fluttering targets.
Project description:The traditional assumption that bats cannot synthesize vitamin C (Vc) has been challenged recently. We have previously shown that two Old World bat species (Rousettus leschenaultii and Hipposideros armiger) have functional L-gulonolactone oxidase (GULO), an enzyme that catalyzes the last step of Vc biosynthesis de novo. Given the uncertainties surrounding when and how bats lost GULO function, exploration of gene evolutionary patterns is needed. We therefore sequenced GULO genes from 16 bat species in 5 families, aiming to establish their evolutionary histories. In five cases we identified pseudogenes for the first time, including two cases in the genus Pteropus (P. pumilus and P. conspicillatus) and three in family Hipposideridae (Coelops frithi, Hipposideros speoris, and H. bicolor). Evolutionary analysis shows that the Pteropus clade has the highest ? ratio and has been subjected to relaxed selection for less than 3 million years. Purifying selection acting on the pseudogenized GULO genes of roundleaf bats (family Hipposideridae) suggests they have lost the ability to synthesize Vc recently. Limited mutations in the reconstructed GULO sequence of the ancestor of all bats contrasts with the many mutations in the ancestral sequence of recently emerged Pteropus bats. We identified at least five mutational steps that were then related to clade origination times. Together, our results suggest that bats lost the ability to biosynthesize vitamin C recently by exhibiting stepwise mutation patterns during GULO evolution that can ultimately lead to pseudogenization.
Project description:Bats are the second largest group of mammals on earth and act as reservoirs of many emerging viruses. In this study, a novel bat adenovirus (AdV) (BtAdV-TJM) was isolated from bat fecal samples by using a bat primary kidney cell line. Infection studies indicated that most animal and human cell lines are susceptible to BtAdV-TJM, suggesting a possible wide host range. Genome analysis revealed 30 putative genes encoding proteins homologous to their counterparts in most known AdVs. Phylogenetic analysis placed BtAdV-TJM within the genus Mastadenovirus, most closely related to tree shrew and canine AdVs. PCR analysis of 350 bat fecal samples, collected from 19 species in five Chinese provinces during 2007 and 2008, indicated that 28 (or 8%) samples were positive for AdVs. The samples were from five bat species, Hipposideros armiger, Myotis horsfieldii, M. ricketti, Myotis spp., and Scotophilus kuhlii. The prevalence ranged from 6.25% (H. armiger in 2007) to 40% (M. ricketti in 2007). Comparison studies based on available partial sequences of the pol gene demonstrated a great genetic diversity among bat AdVs infecting different bat species as well as those infecting the same bat species. This is the first report of a genetically diverse group of DNA viruses in bats. Our results support the notion, derived from previous studies based on RNA viruses (especially coronaviruses and astroviruses), that bats seem to have the unusual ability to harbor a large number of genetically diverse viruses within a geographic location and/or within a taxonomic group.
Project description:Each animal population has its own acoustic signature which facilitates identification, communication and reproduction. The sonar signals of bats can convey social information, such as species identity and contextual information. The goal of this study was to determine whether bats adjust their echolocation call structures to mutually recognize and communicate when they encounter the bats from different colonies. We used the intermediate leaf-nosed bats (Hipposideros larvatus) as a case study to investigate the variations of echolocation calls when bats from one colony were introduced singly into the home cage of a new colony or two bats from different colonies were cohabitated together for one month. Our experiments showed that the single bat individual altered its peak frequency of echolocation calls to approach the call of new colony members and two bats from different colonies adjusted their call frequencies toward each other to a similar frequency after being chronically cohabitated. These results indicate that the 'compromise' in echolocation calls might be used to ensure effective mutual communication among bats.
Project description:This data article informs about Chiropteran diversity, new records, ecosystem services and possible pathogen carriers in fragmented forests (sub-divided by utility corridors, man-made structures, untouched and secondary plantations) within districts Setiu (Setiu Research Station), Hulu Terengganu (Saok and Lasir waterfalls) and Besut (Gunung Tebu Forest Reserve) of state Terengganu, Peninsular Malaysia. These bats were captured using harp traps and mist nets that were set 10?m apart across flyways, streams and less cluttered trees in the 50?m × 50?m transect zones (identified at each site). All animals were distinguished by morphology and gender before their release at the site of capture. The data comprise of five bat family groups Hipposideridae, Megadermatidae, Pteropodidae, Rhinolophidae and Vespertilionidae. It is interesting to note that untouched Saok Waterfalls is home to wide variety of bats listed (68.8%), followed by secondary forests of Gunung Tebu Forest Reserve (24.8%), untouched Lasir Waterfalls (4.8%) and lastly, Setiu Research Station as least favored (1.6%). Chiroptera like Cynopterus brachyotis (n = 23, 37.7%), Hipposideros bicolor (n = 6, 9.8%) and Scotophilus kuhli (n = 6, 9.8%) were most dominant in the checklist whereas Hipposideros armiger, Murina suilla and Scotophilus kuhlii are new data records in the fragmented forests of Terengganu. The data were interpret into Shannon, Simpson, Margalef, Menhinik and Evenness indices to individually or collectively distinguish chiropteran variety in Terengganu State whereas weight-forearm length (W/FA) informs about chiropteran Body Condition Index (-0.25 to 0.25). The function of bats were also identified to distinguish service providers (pollination and forests regeneration) and zoonotic pathogen carriers (in particular to Leptospira bacteria, Nipah virus and Sindbis virus).
Project description:Anthropogenic noise decreases signal active space, or the area over which male bird song can be detected in the environment. For territorial males, noise may make it more difficult to detect and assess territorial challenges, which in turn may increase defense costs and influence whether males maintain territory ownership. We tested the hypothesis that noise affects the ability of male house wrens (Troglodytes aedon) near active nests to detect intruders and alters responses to them. We broadcast pre-recorded male song and pink noise on territories to simulate intrusions with and without noise, as well as to noise alone. We measured detection by how long males took to sing or approach the speaker after the start of a playback. To measure whether playbacks changed male behavior, we compared their vocal responses before and during treatments, as well as compared mean vocal responses and the number of flyovers and attacks on the speaker during treatments. Noise did not affect a male's ability to detect an intruder on his territory. Males altered their responses to simulated intruders with and without noise compared to the noise-only treatment by singing longer songs at faster rates. Males increased peak frequency of songs during intrusions without noise compared to noise-only treatments, but frequency during intruder plus noise treatments did not differ from either. When confronting simulated intruders in noise, males increased the number of attacks on the speaker compared to intruders without noise, possibly because they were less able to assess intruders via songs and relied on close encounters for information. Although noise did not affect intruder detection, noise affected some aspects of singing and aggressive responses, which may be related to the challenge of discriminating and assessing territorial threats under elevated noise.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>The bat fly genus <i>Ascodipteron</i> Adensamer, 1896 currently contains 15 species, all of which occur in tropical and subtropical areas of the Eastern Hemisphere. A new species of endoparasitic bat fly, <i>Ascodipteron sanmingensis</i> sp. nov., was collected from the Great Himalayan Leaf-nosed Bat, <i>Hipposideros armiger</i> (Hodgson, 1853), during ecological studies on bats in Fujian, China.<h4>New information</h4>A new species, <i>Ascodipteron sanmingensis</i> sp. nov., is described, based on dealate neosomic females and is supported by molecular data from a 368 bp fragment of the cytochrome B (Cytb) gene. Habitus and diagnostic details, as well as the attachment sites on the host, are documented with photographs. A detailed comparison of the new species with related species is provided and the new species is accommodated in the most recent key to the world species of <i>Ascodipteron</i>.
Project description:Faeces Vespertilionis is a commonly used fecal traditional Chinese medicine. Traditionally, it is identified relying only on morphological characters. This poses a serious challenge to the composition analysis accuracy of this complex biological mixture. Thus, for quality control purposes, an accurate and effective method should be provided for taxonomic identification of Faeces Vespertilionis. In this study, 26 samples of Faeces Vespertilionis from ten provinces in China were tested using DNA metabarcoding. Seven operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were detected as belonging to bats. Among them, Hipposideros armiger (Hodgson, 1835) and Rhinolophus ferrumequinum (Schober and Grimmberger, 1997) were the main host sources of Faeces Vespertilionis samples, with average relative abundances of 59.3% and 24.1%, respectively. Biodiversity analysis showed that Diptera and Lepidoptera were the most frequently consumed insects. At the species level, 19 taxa were clearly identified. Overall, our study used DNA metabarcoding to analyze the biological composition of Faeces Vespertilionis, which provides a new idea for the quality control of this special traditional Chinese medicine.
Project description:Bats are known to be potential reservoirs of numerous human-pathogenic viruses. They have been identified as natural hosts for coronaviruses, causing Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in humans. Since the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 in 2019 interest in the prevalence of coronaviruses in bats was newly raised. In this study we investigated different bat species living in a sympatric colony in the Wavul Galge cave (Koslanda, Sri Lanka). In three field sessions (in 2018 and 2019), 395 bats were captured (<i>Miniopterus, Rousettus, Hipposideros</i> and <i>Rhinolophus</i> spp.) and either rectal swabs or fecal samples were collected. From these overall 396 rectal swab and fecal samples, the screening for coronaviruses with nested PCR resulted in 33 positive samples, 31 of which originated from <i>Miniopterus fuliginosus</i> and two from <i>Rousettus leschenaultii</i>. Sanger sequencing and phylogenetic analysis of the obtained 384-nt fragment of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase revealed that the examined <i>M. fuliginosus</i> bats excrete alphacoronaviruses and the examined <i>R. leschenaultii</i> bats excrete betacoronaviruses. Despite the sympatric roosting habitat, the coronaviruses showed host specificity and seemed to be limited to one species. Our results represent an important basis to better understand the prevalence of coronaviruses in Sri Lankan bats and may provide a basis for pursuing studies on particular bat species of interest.
Project description:Bats of the Rhinolophidae and Hipposideridae families, and Pteronotus parnellii, compensate for Doppler shifts generated by their own flight movement. They adjust their call frequency such that the frequency of echoes coming from ahead fall in a specialized frequency range of the hearing system, the auditory fovea, to evaluate amplitude and frequency modulations in echoes from fluttering prey. Some studies in hipposiderids have suggested a less sophisticated or incomplete Doppler shift compensation. To investigate the precision of Doppler shift compensation in Hipposideros armiger, we recorded the echolocation and flight behaviour of bats flying to a grid, reconstructed the flight path, measured the flight speed, calculated the echo frequency, and compared it with the resting frequency prior to each flight. Within each flight, the average echo frequency was kept constant with a standard deviation of 110?Hz, independent of the flight speed. The resting and reference frequency were coupled with an offset of 80?Hz; however, they varied slightly from flight to flight. The precision of Doppler shift compensation and the offset were similar to that seen in Rhinolophidae and P. parnellii. The described frequency variations may explain why it has been assumed that Doppler shift compensation in hipposiderids is incomplete.