Rhinolophus euryale

Rhinolophus euryale
Rhinolophus euryale
Rhinolophus euryale

From Transcaucasia to Israel and South Europe, Turkmenistan, Iran, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia and probably Egypt. In Bulgaria – occurs all over the country.

A medium-sized horseshoe bat. Uniform colouring – grey-brown to red-brown dorsal fur contrasting with the grey or grey-white ventral side. The connecting process tapers to a pointed tip that is slightly curved downwards; the profile of the connecting process above the sella is half-moon shaped. The sella looks broadly rounded at the end from below. The lancet tapers evenly towards the tip. In the wing, the second phalanx of the fourth finger is more than twice as long as the first one

At rest the long constant-frequency call has a frequency of 102-109 kHz. This frequency is lower in Western Europe than in the Balkans. The calls of the Lesser Horseshoe Bat and Mehely`s Horseshoe Bat are usually higher, but the range can overlap with that of the Mediterranean Horseshoe Bat.

Karst areas through a clear preference for caves as summer roosts. Nursery roosts are usually in areas below 800 m. Hunting grounds – deciduous forests, riparian forests and scrublands are visited, as well as olive groves and eucalyptus plantations. In Bulgaria the largest nursery roost is observed, containing over 10,000 individuals. Roost changes are usually observed within distances of less than 50 km. In Bulgaria distances of up to 60 km have been recorded several times. Distances between the hunting grounds and the roosts are different in each country, in Bulgaria they can reach 24 km.

Summer roosts and nursery roosts and winter roosts are mainly in caves, but a substantial part of the Carpathian population occupies roof spaces of buildings.

The colonies in the summer and winter are very large and they are surrounded by small satellite colonies. The main colonies are in caves and can include over 5,000 animals, the satellite colonies include dozens to hundreds of animals. In the summer, colonies are mixed with other species. In Bulgaria the Mediterranean Horseshoe bat is living with the Blasius’s horseshoe bat and the Mehely’s horseshoe bat. The species is very sensitive to disturbance. The birth occurs from mid-June or July. At the age of four weeks, the young become independent. Females give their first birth at the age of 2-3 years. Mating takes place in the Autumn in caves, but may continue in the winter roosts.

The Mediterranean Horseshoe bat`s flights are very agile and manoeuvre well. Can hunt in almost impenetrable bushes. Dense vegetation can be approached very closely from outside, or the animals hunt within the crown between branches and twigs. Usually moths constitute up to 90% of the food; 10-15% of the diet are lacewing, cockroaches and crane-flies.

Pesticide use in forests. Disturbance of the colonies in caves.

 

Christian Dietz and Andreas Kiefer (2014), “Bats of Britain and Europe”;

Vasil Popov, Atila Sedefchev (2003), “Mammals in Bulgaria”;

Vasil Popov, Nikolay Spasov, Teodora Ivanova, Borqna Mihaylova and Kiril Georgiev (2007), “Mammals important for conservation in Bulgaria”.