The Greater short-nosed fruit bat Cynopterus sphinx (Vahl, 1797) is one among the 14 species of Old World fruit bats occurring in the Indian subcontinent and has been recently reported to cause economic loss to commercial fruit crops. We studied the temporal patterns of foraging and magnitude of loss caused by C. sphinx in Andhra Pradesh, India. Observations carried out over a period of 36 nights in 1-ha plots of vineyards revealed that the species foraged in groups of 2–8 individuals with two peaks in foraging activity reflecting their behavioural adaptability in response to food quality and quantity. The magnitude of loss due to foraging of C. sphinx gradually decreased from the periphery of the plot to the centre. Along the periphery the extent of damage was > 90%. No damage was recorded in the central regions of either plots. Greater short-nosed fruit bat foraging in vineyards cause a revenue loss of ca. US$ 590 ha-1.
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Vol. 4 • No. 2