Egyptian Fruit Bat - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-22-2002, 12:42 PM Thread Starter
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Egyptian Fruit Bat

Class: Mammalia
Order: Chiroptera
Family: Pteropodidae
Scientific name: Rousettus aegyptiacus

Description
This is a fairly small species of fruit bat, commonly found in captivity, being only around 9" long an a wing span of 16-20" with a weight of 3-6 ounces. Males are noticeably larger then females. Their coloring is uniformly brownish/grey with lighter colored underside. The muzzle is long and pointed, the eyes are large and usually brown or yellowish. The ears are large, erect, and constantly in motion. Males have a sagittal crest on the top of their heads where the strong jaw muscles are attached. The young have black spots that gradually fade as they mature. They are known to have a lifespan of around 23 years in captivity. They are nocturnal, and are agile fliers. They use a rudimentary form of echolocation, sending out a repeating clicking noise. They have a very well developed sense of smell.



Behavior
In the wild, which their range covers most of africa and into the middle east, Egyptian fruit bats are a relatively common species which roost in tombs, temples, rock crevices, trees, caves and pretty much anywhere else adequately sheltered. In caves they are never far from the entrance, most likely because they do not echolocate very well. They may fly 20-25 miles a night from the roost to feed. The feeding grounds change continuously as various trees fruit and flower. The bat extracts fruit juice by using its muscular tongue to press fruit pulp against its ridged palette somewhat like an orange juice squeezer. Some colonies are known to make short migrations. When roosting, these bats crowded together, touching one another. Disputes are common and noisy.

In captivity they are calm and sweet animals. Rarely bite, unless restrained. They spend most of their day sleeping, and wake around 9pm to search for food. They are not particularily personable, but will come to you if you have food they like. They are very good climbers, and can go right up a piece of clothing you are wearing. And, even though its unlikely one would ever do so in the wild, a captive one climbing up your shoulder can get caught nicely in long hair.

Captive Diet
Bananas, canteloupe, apples, oranges, grapes, canned primate diet, figs, dates, pears, plums, tomatoes, papaya, avocado, berries, leafy greens. Also canned nectar fruits: peach, pear or Nekton Lorikeet nectar mix.

Reproduction
Mating takes place in June, gestation is around 4 months, births usually occur in October or November. Females carry an infant at first, but leave them at roosts when they are larger. By early March the young are weaned and able to fly on their own. Usually only one baby is born at a time, but occassionally twins are born. Female pups mature in about 5 months but males take 15 months to mature.



Captive Housing
Zoos tend to set up a large, more naturalistic roost, but they are quite happy in anything that they has a dark quiet sleeping area. Free of drafts and any disturbances. They do hang upside down, so they need something to hang from. Either a mesh ceiling or branches of some sort. Cages with bars, like most bird cages, are not recommended because of the fragility of their wings and the risk of having a wing get through a bar and break - these type of injuries rarely are able to heal properly to allow flight again.

Issues
All bat species are listed as a public health hazard, due to the rabies risk.. and as such, no wild bat should ever be kept as a pet. There are very few captive breeders of any species, aside from zoos. The legality of owning a captive born bat as a pet in the US is somewhat dubious. Even if the animal is not native to the US the law, as it is worded, is not very clear, but was intended to protect native species.

Egyptian fruit bats are not endangered or threatened. They have a large range and can be found in enormous populations. In some places they are even considered vermin and trapped, poisoned, or otherwise destroyed in order to save crops for human consumption.



Hopefully that makes some sense, I nicked the info from all over the web and a few books.

Rav

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-31-2002, 09:38 PM
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Thanks for the info on the egyptian fruit bat. I've always loved bats (they're so cute) but I don't know much about them. Do people keep these as pets?
 
post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-31-2002, 09:52 PM
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How cute are they! I didn't know people kept bats as pets either. I have been into bats since my sophomore year of highschool because of my biology teacher. We called her the bat lady because she was so into them.

What type of enclosure would you keep them in and what type of temperatures would they need.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-01-2002, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
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Those pictures are of my bat, Filbert. I keep him in a large Reptarium enclosure - it is made of a fine mesh. Temps, I keep him pretty much at normal room temperature (which at my house is probably a bit warmer than most people's - around 80 degrees) - if it gets especially cold, I put a red heat lamp on him. The main thing is to keep him out of drafts. I have a large sheet over the corner of his cage that he sleeps in to help with drafts and to make it dark for him to sleep during the day.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-01-2002, 09:51 AM
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I didn't realize that was your bat! He is so cute! I love the picture of him hanging. Now that I know that you must take more picurtes!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 08:58 PM
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Where did you get him from?
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-26-2008, 05:20 PM
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Hey I so want one. I've been on this bat kick since I read Gregor the overlander series and I looked in books and figured the fruit ones would be easiest, but here's my prob. I live in the US, west coast. Anyone know how I can get one? Prefferably a young one so i can keep it for awhile and I can train it if they do train. Thanks
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-28-2008, 06:54 AM
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I just love bats.
Yours is so cute!
What kind of enclosure do the have to be kept in?
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-22-2008, 03:51 PM
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where can you get bats? I've never heard of them being for sale.


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