Posted by: Loren Coleman on September 17th, 2007
The pictured flying fox (above) is the Ausytralian grey-headed flying-fox (Pteropus poliocephalus), which was first described in 1825 by Temminck. A new species of flying fox or fruit bat has been discovered.
A new species of flying fox or fruit bat has been found and verified from Mindoro Island, south of Manila, Philippines, it was reported Monday, September 17, 2007, by the news service AFP and other media sources.
The orange-colored bat with a distinctive white-stripped face was discovered in a protected wildlife area of Mindoro Island, as detailed by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). Known as the “Mindoro stripe-faced fruitbat” for its striking facial features, the bat was discovered by accident when it was caught in a net set by the researchers.
One of the Filipino researchers, Jake Esselstyn, said the bat was found during a survey of mammals, reptiles, and amphibians in the Sablayan region on the west coast of the island. The team from the Comparative Biogeography and Conservation of Philippine Vertebrates (CBCPV) project conducted an expedition in Mindoro Occidental early last year that led to the discovery of the new fruit bat species.
Details of the finding were published last week in the Journal of Mammalogy. Cryptozoologist Chad Arment has noted since this was a species that was ethnoknown, the find is of significance to cryptozoology. An animal known to the locals but not verified yet by science (before the “discovery”) is thus of direct relevance to cryptozoology, the study of hidden, yet-to-be identified zoological species.
The discovery of the new fruit bat species brings the number of bat species in the Philippines to 74 with 26 unique to the Philippines.