oa African Zoology - Aspects of temperature and humidity in preferred hibernation sites of the Natal clinging bat Miniopterus schreibersi natalensis (A. Smith, 1834)

Volume 8, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



In the Transvaal, Miniopterus schreibersi natalensis forms hibernating colonies during May-July on the highveld where the ambient and cave temperatures are lower than in the lowveld. In two highveld caves, mating and hibernating colonies were resident from January to the end of July, but only one cave was occupied for hibernating during the winter. In the cave selected for hibernation humidity was lower, and fluctuated more, than in the other cave. Temperature also fluctuated more, but tended to average lower, than in the unused cave. It appears that low temperature rather than high humidity determined the choice of a hibernating cave.

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