Wahlberg’s Epauletted Fruit Bat

The Wahlberg’s Epauletted Fruit Bat (Epomophorus wahlbergi) is a mammal in the Pteropodidae family of megabats. 

The Wahlberg’s Epauletted Fruit Bat is brown to tawny coloured with white patches at the base of its ears. The male is darker than the female. The male has epaulettes (shoulder hair). It has large eyes. It has oval-shaped ears. Its lips are folded and expandable. 

Wahlberg’s Epauletted Fruit Bat

Its wingspan is 45-60 centimetres (18-24 inches). 

It is found in southern Africa. It prefers forests, shrublands, and savannahs. 

It is a frugivore, eating fruit, especially figs and guava.

The Wahlberg’s Epauletted Fruit Bat is nocturnal, active at night. It roosts in well-lit open trees, under palm leaves, in thick forests, in caves, and under thatched roofs. 

It lives in colonies. It roosts together in groups of 3-100 individuals. It changes its roosting location every few days, from fruit tree to fruit tree.

The female is pregnant for 150-180 days (5-6 months). She usually gives birth to one young, called a pup. It is fully grown at 15 months of age.

Wahlberg’s Epauletted Fruit Bat

Location of photographs: Grant Museum of Zoology, London

Photographer: Martina Nicolls


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