Rare Lesser woolly bat caught

Merlin and Koos taking a break from bat netting to eat a South African favorite dish--bobotie http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bobotie
Merlin and Koos taking a break from bat netting to eat South Africa’s favorite dish–bobotie–made by Koos’ wife Riekie

Merlin would like to photograph Long-eared bats (Laephotis) catching green stink bugs which are a pest of macademia nut orchards here in South Africa. Koos Steyn has been providing invaluable help in netting and trapping for Long-eared bats on a mountain where they’ve previously been found. But even though the rains have ceased and the temperatures are warming up a little, it’s still cool in the evenings, and we’re not catching very many bats.

 

IMG_1642Unfortunately, we didn’t catch any Long-eared bats, and on our way back to the Taylor’s home, we got a flat tire we had to change.

But the next morning, Koos checked the trap and found a rare Lesser woolly bat (Kerivoula lanosa) inside. Here are the photos Merlin got.

Lesser woolly bat (Kerivoula lanosa)
Lesser woolly bat (Kerivoula lanosa)
Lesser woolly bat (Kerivoula lanosa)
Lesser woolly bat      (Kerivoula lanosa)

We couldn’t have gotten the Lesser woolly bat without Koos Steyn who teaches agronomy at the University of Venda and has his own macademia orchard. Koos has been finishing up his PhD and working with his colleague Peter Taylor in documenting local bats and their feeding behavior for the past several years.

 

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