Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Aspects of the ecophysiology of some vespertilionid bats at the northern borders of their distribution
Author: Webb, P. I.
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 1992
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Models for energy and water balance in vespertilionid bats were developed based on generally accepted concepts of energy and water flux in mammals and on current knowledge of bat ecology. Free-flying colonies of brown long-eared (Plecotus auritus), Daubenton's (Myotis daubentoni) and pipistrelle (Pipistrellus pipistrellus) bats were maintained in captivity and fed on mealworms. Mealworms consisted of 61% water, and of their dry mass 31% was lipid, 39% protein, < 1% carbohydrate and < 1% ash. Energy content was 28.6 kJ/g dry mass. Fresh bat faeces consisted of 73% water, and of their dry mass 3% was lipid, 9% protein, 7% carbohydrate and < 1% ash. The apparent absorption efficiency by bats of dry mass was 85% and of energy was 90%. Ninety five % of defaecation occurred within 12 hours of feeding. Maximum urine concentrating ability in both brown long-eared and Daubenton's bats was at the lower end of the range found in bats and was lower than that predicted for a mammal of the same body mass. Post-prandial urine loss was dependent upon food consumption. Post-prandial urine flow rate was greater in Daubenton's than in brown long-eared bats. Ventilation frequency in resting bats was not significantly different to that predicted for a terrestrial mammal of the same size. Breathing became apneic when both ambient temperature and oxygen consumption were low and in half of all measurements made at thermoneutrality. Hyperventilation occurred at ambient temperatures above the upper critical (39oC). Evaporation in resting bats was higher than predicted from terrestrial mammals but not significantly different to that in other bats of the same size. Evaporation in resting bats increased with increasing ambient temperature and oxygen consumption and in torpid bats was approximately 15 to 20% of that in euthermic bats. In free-flying colonies of bats, body mass and food consumption determined the future level of activity. Activity did not determine food consumption. Daubenton's bats both drank and fed sooner on emerging from the roost than did brown long-eared bats. On being deprived of food, brown long-eared bats only reduced flight activity on the second night of deprivation. On being deprived of drinking water for a single night, brown long-eared bats showed no change in flight activity or food consumption. Growth rate of juvenile pipistrelles was predicted to be 2.31 The efficiency with which mealworms were converted to juvenile body tissue was 22.3%. Little if any of the mother's body fat was mobilised during lactation and the efficiency with which mealworms were turned into milk was 100%.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available