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1 December 2010 Do Current Vampire Bat (Desmodus rotundus) Population Control Practices Pose a Threat to Dekeyser's Nectar Bat's (Lonchophylla dekeyseri) Long-Term Persistence in the Cerrado?
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Abstract

The Cerrado is rapidly losing space to agriculture, pastures and urbanization. Current management practices to control rabies outbreaks through the eradication of vampire bat populations may put other bat species in peril. Our objective is to evaluate if the current vampire bat population control practices could pose a threat to Lonchophylla dekeyseri's persistence, an endemic bat of the Cerrado. We used the VORTEX program to model different vampire bat management scenarios, causing low (25%), medium (50%) or high (75%) incidental mortality to L. dekeyseri populations. Inbreeding depression has been identified as a threat to the species, therefore we also modeled scenarios evaluating such effects. Results show that current vampire bat management practices have serious impacts on populations of L. dekeyseri. In all cases marked declines in population sizes were observed (even when there was no decline in survival probabilities). For medium and high incidental mortality management scenarios, we also observed decreases in survival probability and in genetic diversity. In those scenarios evaluating vampire bat management and inbreeding depression together, the models suggest that such interaction results in more pronounced declines. Habitat loss and fragmentation in the Cerrado are severe threats and have already negatively impacted L. dekeyseri. Unfortunately, if currentpopulation control practices dealing with vampire bats are not changed, inappropriate rabies management may be the coup de grace to the long-term persistence of this species.

© Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS
Ludmilla M. S. Aguiar, Daniel Brito, and Ricardo B. Machado "Do Current Vampire Bat (Desmodus rotundus) Population Control Practices Pose a Threat to Dekeyser's Nectar Bat's (Lonchophylla dekeyseri) Long-Term Persistence in the Cerrado?," Acta Chiropterologica 12(2), 275-282, (1 December 2010). https://doi.org/10.3161/150811010X537855
Received: 24 March 2009; Accepted: 1 February 2010; Published: 1 December 2010
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