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  Conservation status of bats in sub-Saharan Africa

Monadjem, A., Taylor, P., Cotteri, F. P. D. W., Kityo, R., & Fahr, J. (2007). Conservation status of bats in sub-Saharan Africa. Bat Research News, 48(4), 267.

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 Creators:
Monadjem, Ara, Author
Taylor, Peter, Author
Cotteri, F. P. D. Woody, Author
Kityo, Robert, Author
Fahr, Jakob1, Author           
Affiliations:
1Universität Ulm, ou_persistent22              

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 Abstract: Sub-Saharan Africa covers a diverse range of biomes and associated habitats ranging from desert to tropical forest, which support a rich bat fauna. Over 220 species of bats in nine families have been recorded from Africa. The Global Mammal Assessment (GMA) for African small mammals held in 2004 evaluated the conservation status of bat species occurring on the continent and oceanic islands (but excluding Madagascar). A total of 219 species were assessed. One is extinct, 41 are threatened (Critically Endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable), 33 are Near Threatened, 106 are Least Concern and 38 are Data Deficient. Of the eight Critically Endangered species, five are island endemics that highlight the plight of insular faunas. The large number of Data Deficient species reflects our limited knowledge of African bats as shown by many Data Deficient species being represented solely by the type specimen. Population declines of various African bat species have been claimed, but most are founded on indirect evidence such as habitat destruction, and quantitative data documenting such declines are scare. A noteworthy exception is that of the fruit bat Eidolon helvum whose population in Kampala, Uganda, has declined from 250,000 to 40,000 in 40 years. Bat populations across Africa face numerous threats such as habitat destruction, disturbance and harvesting at roost sites (particularly caves), poisoning, and pesticides. The taxonomy and phylogeny of many African bat genera and families remains in urgent need of revision. Several species currently not considered threatened by the Red List are likely to include cryptic species with restricted distribution ranges and hence at risk. Priority and practicable conservation actions we suggest include gap analyses (i.e. identifying deficiencies in the current network of protected areas), long-term monitoring programs focusing on selected species or sites, mapping of important cave roosts, all in tandem with public awareness programs.

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 Dates: 2007
 Publication Status: Published in print
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 Identifiers: Other: BIOSIS:PREV200800214432
ISSN: 0005-6227
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Title: Bat Research News
Source Genre: Journal
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: 48 (4) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 267 Identifier: -