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2 October 2019 EXAMINATION OF FUNGAL DIVERSITY PRESENT ON MEXICAN FREE-TAILED BATS, TADARIDA BRASILIENSIS MEXICANA, IN COLORADO
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Abstract

We surveyed a summer population of Tadarida brasiliensis mexicana in south-central Colorado to gain an initial characterization of the resident mycobiome (i.e., fungal biota) present on their body surfaces. We cultured fungal spores from bats captured in early and late summer and then conducted DNA barcoding analysis for taxonomic identification. Phylum Ascomycota dominated the ectomycotal (i.e., fungi present on body surfaces) community, with the most common genera including Aspergillus, Penicillium, Cladosporium, and Eurotium. Phylum Basidiomycota constituted a smaller proportion of fungal isolates and was composed primarily of Cryptococcus, Peniophora, Cystofilobasidium, and Sistotrema. We found seasonal differences in fungal community composition, with diversity and evenness increasing from June to August. There were notable differences in fungal communities present on adult vs. juvenile bats, with juveniles having a greater number of unique genera, greater fungal diversity, and lower species evenness compared with adults. We isolated a number of fungal species that are capable of growing at low temperatures, indicating that T. b. mexicana harbors viable psychrophilic fungi.

Steven D. Fenster, Kirk Navo, Alec Betancur, Daniel Hubbard, Caitlyn Reese, and Erin M. Lehmer "EXAMINATION OF FUNGAL DIVERSITY PRESENT ON MEXICAN FREE-TAILED BATS, TADARIDA BRASILIENSIS MEXICANA, IN COLORADO," The Southwestern Naturalist 63(4), 256-267, (2 October 2019). https://doi.org/10.1894/0038-4909-63-4-256
Received: 8 June 2017; Accepted: 12 June 2019; Published: 2 October 2019
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