Evidence for exploitative competition: Comparative foraging behavior and roosting ecology of short-tailed fruit bats (Phyllostomidae)

Frank J. Bonaccorso, John R. Winkelmann, Danny Shin, Caroline I. Agrawal, Nadia Aslami, Caitlin Bonney, Andrea Hsu, Phoebe E. Jekielek, Allison K. Knox, Stephen J. Kopach, Tara D. Jennings, Jesse R. Lasky, Sarah A. Menesale, Jeannine H. Richards, Jessica A. Rutland, Anna K. Sessa, Luba Zhaurova, Thomas H. Kunz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Chestnut short-tailed bats, Carollia castanea, and Seba's short-tailed bats, C. perspicillata (Phyllostomidae), were radio-tracked (N = 1593 positions) in lowland rain forest at Tiputini Biodiversity Station, Orellana Province, Ecuador. For 11 C. castanea, mean home range was 6.8 ± 2.2 ha, mean core-use area was 1.7 ± 0.8 ha, and mean long axis across home range was 438 ± 106 m. For three C. perspicillata, mean home range was 5.5 ± 1.7 ha, mean core-use area was 1.3 ± 0.6 ha, and mean long axis was 493 ± 172 m. Groups of less than five C. castanea occupied day-roosts in earthen cavities that undercut banks the Tiputini River. Carollia perspicillata used tree hollows and buildings as day-roosts. Interspecific and intraspecific overlap among short-tailed bats occurred in core-use areas associated with clumps of fruiting Piper hispidum (peppers) and Cecropia sciadophylla. Piper hispidum seeds were present in 80 percent of the fecal samples from C. castanea and 56 percent of samples from C. perspicillata. Carollia perspicillata handled pepper fruits significantly faster than C. castanea; however, C. castanea commenced foraging before C. perspicillata emerged from day-roosts. Evidence for exploitative competition between C. castanea and C. perspicillata is suggested by our observations that 95 percent of ripe P. hispidum fruits available at sunset disappear before sunrise (N = 74 marked fruits). Piper hispidum plants produced zero to 12 ripe infructescences per plant each night during peak production. Few ripe infructescences of P. hispidum were available during the dry season; however, ripe infructescences of C. sciadophylla, remained abundant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-256
Number of pages8
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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