Mammalian Biology

, Volume 75, Issue 4, pp 320–325 | Cite as

Reproduction of the large fruit-eating bat Artibeus lituratus (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae) in a Brazilian Atlantic forest area

  • Ana Paula G. Duarte
  • Sônia A. TalamoniEmail author
Original Investigation


In this study we investigated the male testicular activity and the reproductive condition of females in relation to their external reproductive characteristics (pregnant, lactating, post-lactating) in the phyllostomid bat Artibeus lituratus (Olfers, 1818). Five hundred and twenty six individuals were examined (197 males and 329 females) in the period December 2001 to May 2003. Throughout the study most males displayed large scrotal testes. Thirty-three males were randomly selected for histological examination at various times throughout the year and were found to have spermatogenic testes. The reproductive characteristics of the females indicated that they were reproductively active mainly during the wet season. Pregnancy occurs at the end of the dry season and parturition in the wet season. Most individuals captured after this season, mainly the females, were sexually immature. Our results suggest a seasonal monoestrous reproductive pattern for the species; however, adult males being fertile throughout the year could suggest polyoestry. Seasonal polyoestry is a possibility. There was, however, no evidence that females had more than one pregnancy per year.


Artibeus lituratus Monoestry Polyoestry Spermatogenesis 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Baumgarten, J.E., Vieira, E.M., 1994. Reproductive seasonality and development of Anoura geoffroyi (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae) in central Brazil. Mammalia 58, 415–422.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Berndtson, W.E., 1977. Methods for quantifying mammalian spermatogenesis: a review. J. Anim. Sci. 44, 818–833.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bronson, F.H., 1985. Mammalian reproduction: an ecological perspective. Biol. Reprod. 32, 1–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chaverri, G., Kunz, T.H., 2006. Reproductive biology and postnatal development in the tent-making bat Artibeus watsoni (Chiroptera, Phyllostomidae). J. Zool. 270, 650–656.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Couto, D., Talamoni, S.A., 2005. Reproductive condition of Akodon montensis Thomas and Bolomys lasiurus (Lund) (Rodentia, Muridae) based on histological and histometric analyses of testes and external characteristics of gonads. Acta Zool. 86, 111–116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Estrada, A., Coates-Estrada, R., 2001. Species composition and reproductive phenology of bats in a tropical landscape at Los Tuxtlas. J. Trop. Ecol. 17, 627–646.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fleming, T.H., Hooper, E.T., Wilson, D.E., 1972. Three Central American bat communities: structure, reproductive cycles, and movement patterns. Ecology 53, 555–569.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. França, L.R., 1987. Desenvolvimento testicular de suínos na raça Piau, do nasciemnto aos 12 meses de idade. Master of Science Dissertation, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Minas Gerais.Google Scholar
  9. França, L.R., Russell, L.D., 1998. The testis of domestic animals. In: Martínez-García, F., Regadera, J. (Eds.), Male Reproduction, a multidisciplinary Overview. Churchill Livingstone, Madri, pp. 197–219.Google Scholar
  10. Gaytan, F.M., Lucena, C., Muñoz, E., Paniagua, R., 1986. Morphometric aspects of rat testis development. J. Anat. 145, 155–159.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  11. Heideman, P.D., 1989. Timing of reproduction in the fruit bat Haplonycteris fischeri (Pteropodidae): geographic variation and delayed development. J. Zool. 215, 577–595.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kenagy, G.J., Trombulak, S.C., 1986. Size and function of mammalian testes in relation to body size. J. Mammal. 67, 1–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Krutzsch, P.H., 1979. Male reproduction patterns in nonhibernating bats. J. Reprod. Fert. 56, 333–344.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. McLean, J.A., Speakman, J.R., 2000. Effects of body mass and reproduction on the basal metabolic rate of brown long-eared bats (Plecotus auritus). Physiol. Biochem. Zool. 73, 112–121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Mello, M.A.R., Fernandez, F.A., 2000. Reproduction ecology of the bat Carollia perspicillata (Chiroptera, Phyllostomidae) in a fragment of the Brazilian Atlantic coastal forest. Mamm. Biol. 65, 340–349.Google Scholar
  16. Mena, J.L., Castro, M.W., 2002. Diversity and reproductive patterns of bats in an urban area of Lima, Peru. Ecologia Aplicada 1, 1–8.Google Scholar
  17. Okwun, O.E., Igboeli, G., Ford, J.J., Lunstra, D.D., Johnson, L., 1996. Testicular composition, number of A spermatogonia, germ cell ratios, and number of spermatids in three different breeds of boar. J. Androl. 17, 301–309.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Parreira, G.G., Cardoso, F.M., 1991. Reproductive biology of males of Bolomys lasiurus Lund, 1841 (Rodentia, Cricetidae). I. Spermatogenesis morphology and epithelium seminiferous cycle. Rev. Bras. Biol. 51, 639–646.Google Scholar
  19. Racey, P.A., 1988. Reproductive assessment in bats. In: Kunz, T.H. (Ed.), Ecological and Behavioral Methods in the Study of Bats. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC, pp. 31–45.Google Scholar
  20. Racey, P.A., Entwistle, A.C., 2000. Life-history and reproductive strategies of bats. In: Crichton, E.G., Krutzsch, P.H. (Eds.), Reproductive Biology of Bats. Academic Press, London, pp. 363–414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Reis, S.F., 1989. Reproductive biology of Artibeus lituratus (Olfers, 1818) (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae). Rev. Bras. Biol. 49, 369–372.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Rose, R.W., Nevison, C.M., Dixson, A.F., 1997. Testes weight, body weight and mating systems in marsupials and monotremes. J. Zool. 243, 523–531.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Speakman, J.R., Thomas, D.W., 2003. Physiological Ecology and Energetics of Bats. In: Kunz, T.H., Fenton, M.B. (Eds.), Bat Ecology. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp. 430–490.Google Scholar
  24. Tamsitt, J.R., Valdivieso, D., 1963. Reproductive cycle of the big fruit-eating bat, Artibeus lituratus Olfers. Nature 198, 104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Wilson, D.E., Reeder, D.M., 2005. Mammal Species of the World. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Washington, DC.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Deutsche Gesellschaft für Säugetierkunde 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Programa de Pós-graduação em Zoologia de VertebradosPontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas GeraisBelo HorizonteBrazil

Personalised recommendations