Food and feeding habits of the fruit-eating bat Carollia perspicillata

Victor Quesnel


On 16 July 1992 I realised that a small group of bats, perhaps three or four, had been hanging up in a corner of my bedroom to feed. They did not roost there during the day but used the spot as a temporary roost for feeding only. Getting rid of them I thought might be difficult so I decided to study their feeding behaviour instead. To do that I simply put a sheet of newspaper below the roost to collect the discarded food and faeces and examined the collection later. At first I did this the next day; later the collections accumulated over several days. My interest at the start of the project was simply the food they ate, but when casual obserations suggested that feeding activity was much greater after mid-night than before, I changed the paper at mid-night so I could separate the collections into one before mid-night and one after. At first I could not identify all the fruit or eliminated seeds I found, but by comparing them with fruit I could pick on nearby trees and by growing plants from the seeds, I eventually identified almost all of the species involved. All the observations were made at this one site at Haven Hill Farm, Talparo. On 16 May 1993 the bat was identified as Carrollia perspicillata by April Allgaier.

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