A palm frond makes a convenient nighttime feeding roost for this great stripe-faced bat (Vampyrodes caraccioli) to enjoy a freshly plucked fig. This is one of a group of Latin American species often referred to as "white-lined bats," all of which have one or more stripes on their faces and backs. We are likely to catch several of these distinctive but little-known fruit bats on next years member trip to Venezuela (see back cover).
Like many tropical bats that use large leaves for shelter, great stripe-faced bats roost in small groups and change roosts frequently, rotating among a number of sites within a familiar area. Favoring tropical evergreen forests with dense vegetation, they are found from southern Mexico to northern Brazil and Bolivia, as well as on Trinidad and Tobago.
Photo by Merlin D. Tuttle