Spotted Bat (Euderma maculatum)
- Texas Status
- Protection Status Notes
- In Texas, spotted bats are known from only a few records in Brewster County. They are considered threatened by Texas Parks and Wildlife.
- Euderma maculatum can be distinguished from all other North American bat species by its distinctive coloration (black fur with three large white dorsal spots).
- Life History
- The wintering habits of the spotted bat in the northern part of its range are not well understood. Specimens taken in September and October may indicate post‑breeding wandering but could be elevational movement towards winter range. Parturition likely occurs in June. Postpartum females have been captured from June to late August. Spotted bats feed primarily on flying moths. Spotted bats are high‑flying bats that emit a low frequency, generally audible echolocation call. They generally leave the roost around dark, and may fly continuously most of the night. Foraging has been observed in forest openings, pinyon juniper woodlands, large riverine/riparian habitats riparian habitat associated with small to mid‑sized streams in narrow canyons, wetlands, meadows, and old agricultural fields.
- The spotted bat is distributed in a fairly broad and extremely patchy area and highly associated with prominent rock features. This preference limits it to very small geographic areas with specific geologic features. It has been found in extreme, low desert habitats to high elevation forests. Spotted Bats prefer to roost on rock-faced cliffs and are thought to have non‑colonial specific roost, with unknown characteristics.
- E. maculatum ranges from southern British Columbia to Durango, Mexico. In the United Sates, it is known from all the states (except Washington) west of and including Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico and Texas. In Texas, the only known specimens were captured in the Big Bend National Park, Brewster County.
- Threats and Reasons for Decline
- Historically the spotted bat has endured little impact from human disturbance due to the remoteness of its roosts, but impoundment of reservoirs and a recent increase in recreational rock climbing may impact the species in local situations. Large scale pesticide programs for control of Mormon crickets and grasshoppers could impact the spotted bat by reducing availability of prey. Loss of foraging habitat (conversion of desert wash vegetation and/or grazing of meadows) may also impact the species.
- Ongoing Recovery
- Cliff crevices where spotted bats are known to be roosting or are suitable as roosts should be protected from disturbances.
- More information is needed on general life history and distribution.
Additional details can be found in the online version of The Mammals of Texas for the Spotted Bat