Despite its great mammalian fauna, the bat diversity of Sumatra remains one of the least known of the large Indonesian islands. Between 2010-2012, a research team of faculty, staff, and students from Texas Tech University, Universiti Lampung, Wildlife Conservation Society-Indonesian Program, and Museum Zoologicum Bogoriense, studied bat diversity in Bukit Barisan Selatan landscape, southwestern Sumatra. The result is profound. Sixty bat species, including seven new island records, were documented from the landscape. The exciting findings expand the island’s bat list from 80 to 87. At least another five species are potentially new to science. The results do not only indicate a new chiropteran hotspot in Southeast Asia but also highlight the need for more studies on bat diversity in Sumatra.
In additional, the first dichotomous key to Sumatran bats is provided with the article. The authors hope this key can facilitate bat research in the region.
Source: Joe Chun-Chia Huang, Elly Lestari Jazdzyk, Meyner Nusalawo, Ibnu Maryanto, Maharadatunkamsi, Sigit Wiantoro, and Tigga Kingston (2014). A recent bat survey reveals Bukit Barisan Selatan Landscape as a chiropteran diversity hotspot in Sumatra. Acta Chiropterologica, 16(2): 413–449.