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Parasitism of Bat Flies (Nycteribiidae and Streblidae) on Bats in Urban Environments: Lower Prevalence, Infracommunities, and Specificity

Urbieta, Gustavo L., Torres, Jaire M., Anjos, Elaine A. Carvalho Dos, Carvalho, Cristiano M. Espínola, Graciolli, Gustavo
Acta chiropterologica 2019 v.20 no.2 pp. 511-518
Artibeus lituratus, Carollia, Platyrrhinus lineatus, Streblidae, cerrado, ectoparasites, hosts, parasitism, urban areas
Studies involving parasitism between ectoparasitic flies and bats are scarce for urban environments, which makes it difficult to find association patterns in these altered environments. Herein, we describe the bat flies community, and estimate the prevalence, mean intensity of infestation, infracommunities, and specificity of bat fliesassociations in urban remnants of Cerrado. We collected 371 bat flies of 14 species and 944 bats of 17 species. The most abundant species of bats were Artibeus planirostris (n = 312), Artibeus lituratus (n = 197), Carollia perspicillata (n = 124) and Platyrrhinus lineatus (n = 110). Regarding bat flies, Megistopoda aranea (n = 148) and Trichobius joblingi (n = 118) were the most abundant. The prevalence of bat flies ranged from 0.3 to 43.5% and the mean infestation intensity from 1 to 12 (mean general of 2.04). We found 16 bat flies infracommunities on the most representative hosts (n > 30). Concerning specificity, 71% of bat flies were associated with a single host species (monoxenic). Our results indicate that bats were most parasitized by a single bat flies species, and prevalence and specificity between bat flies and bats were lower in these urban environments.