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Extreme mobility of the world’s largest flying mammals creates key challenges for management and conservation

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Welbergen, J. A., Meade, J., Field, H. E., Edson, D., McMichael, L., Shoo, L. P., Praszczalek, J., Smith, C. and Martin, J. M. (2020) Extreme mobility of the world’s largest flying mammals creates key challenges for management and conservation. BMC Biology, 18 (1). p. 101. ISSN 1741-7007


Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12915-020-00829-w


Effective conservation management of highly mobile species depends upon detailed knowledge of movements of individuals across their range; yet, data are rarely available at appropriate spatiotemporal scales. Flying-foxes (Pteropus spp.) are large bats that forage by night on floral resources and rest by day in arboreal roosts that may contain colonies of many thousands of individuals. They are the largest mammals capable of powered flight, and are highly mobile, which makes them key seed and pollen dispersers in forest ecosystems. However, their mobility also facilitates transmission of zoonotic diseases and brings them in conflict with humans, and so they require a precarious balancing of conservation and management concerns throughout their Old World range. Here, we analyze the Australia-wide movements of 201 satellite-tracked individuals, providing unprecedented detail on the inter-roost movements of three flying-fox species: Pteropus alecto, P. poliocephalus, and P. scapulatus across jurisdictions over up to 5 years.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Biosecurity Queensland
Additional Information:Open access
Subjects:Science > Invasive Species > Animals > Animal control and ecology
Science > Invasive Species > Animals > Impact assessment
Science > Zoology > Chordates. Vertebrates > Mammals
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural ecology (General)
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agriculture and the environment
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Conservation of natural resources
Animal culture > Small animal culture
Live Archive:14 Sep 2020 03:56
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:46

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