Summer Torpor and Sexual Segregation in the Subtropical Bat Rhinopoma microphyllum

  • Eran Levin
  • Amos Ar
  • Yoram Yom-Tov
  • Noga Kronfeld-Schor


During the past few years it has become clear that torpor and hibernation are not limited to high latitudes or cold climates. We studied summer roost selection and torpor patterns of a subtropical greater mouse-tailed bat, Rhinopoma microphyllum, on the edge of its distribution range. During summer, these bats exhibited complete sexual segregation, with males inhabiting a higher and cooler region. Both sexes inhabited warm and dry caves (28–32°C on average). Using radio telemetry, we measured body (skin) temperature and foraging patterns of both sexes during summer. Lactating females remained normothermic during the day and performed longer foraging bouts during the night, while both males and non-lactating females performed shallow torpor, and performed short foraging bouts during the night. We suggest that these differences result from the different energetic challenges of the two sexes during summer, which may contribute to sexual segregation in bats.


Lactate Female Sexual Segregation Radio Telemetry Thermal Physiology Female Summer 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This research was supported by THE ISRAEL SCIENCE FOUNDATION (grant No. 232/08). We are grateful to Dr. Amit Dolev of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel for good advice and help in the field.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eran Levin
    • 1
  • Amos Ar
    • 1
  • Yoram Yom-Tov
    • 1
  • Noga Kronfeld-Schor
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ZoologyTel Aviv UniversityTel AvivIsrael

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