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Rodrigues Fruit Bat (Pteropus rodricensis) Fact Sheet, 2010   Tags: bat, colony, echolocation, fact sheet, flying fox, fruit, island, mammal, mauritius, nocturnal, pollinator, rodrigues, roost, san diego zoo, sdzg, wing  

Rodrigues Fruit Bat (Pteropus rodricensis)
Last Updated: Feb 7, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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Rodrigues Fruit Bat (Pteropus rodricensis) Fact Sheet, 2010

Rodrigues fruit bat, hanging

Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Global. All rights reserved.

TaxonomyPhysical Characteristics

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Mammalia

Order: Chiroptera

Family: Pteropodidae ("flying foxes," Old World fruit bats)

Genus: Pteropus - flying foxes

Species: Pteropus rodricensis - Rodrigues fruit bat, Rodrigues flying fox

Body Weight
254-300 g (0.6-0.7 lb)

Body Length
about 35 cm (13-14 in)

75-90 cm (29-35 in)

Wooly fur; golden fur on head, neck, shoulders, and sometimes back. Dark brown fur elsewhere. Black wings (not furred).

Distribution & StatusBehavior & Ecology

Rodrigues Island (Indian Ocean; a possession of Mauritius, which is east of Madagascar)

Forested areas.
Most of Rodrigues Island's endemic forest is gone.

IUCN Status
Critically Endangered (2008 assessment).
Justification: restricted to a single location.

CITES Status
Appendix II

Other Designations
Recognized as Endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Population in Wild
Many changes in populations since the 1970s.
Possibly 4,000 individuals, ca. 2003.

Flying, climbing

Activity Cycle
Most active at dawn, dusk, and at night.

Social Groups
Strongly colonial and gregarious. Males defend harems of females.

Fruits and flowers, like all Pteropus species.
Historically, tamarind pods and mangos were favored foods (humans cut these trees down).
Some reports of eating insects.

Rats and mynah birds. May not be well documented.

Reproduction & DevelopmentSpecies Highlights

Sexual Maturity
1-2 years of age

140-192 days for Pteropus species

Litter Size
Usually one, occasionally two

Interbirth Interval
180-360 days

Birth Weight
45 g (1.6 oz), on average

Maternal Care
Lasts about one year

Wild: unknown
Captivity: as long as 31 years in some Pteropus species

Feature Facts

  • Largest bat species in the world
  • About 80% of the population is part of a single colony at three roost sites
  • Lack complex echolocation; navigate using vision, hearing, and smell
  • Serve as vital pollinators and seed dispersers
  • Exhibit a "wing shake" behavior as an aggressive display
  • Deforestation and mortality due to cyclones are most significant threats

About This Fact Sheet

© 2010 San Diego Zoo Global

How to cite: Rodrigues Fruit Bat (Pteropus rodricensis) Fact Sheet, 2010. c2010. San Diego (CA): San Diego Zoo Global; [accessed YYYY Mmm dd].
(note: replace YYYY Mmm dd with date accessed, e.g., 2015 Sep 10)

Disclaimer: Although San Diego Zoo Global makes every attempt to provide accurate information, some of the facts provided may become outdated or replaced by new research findings. Questions and comments may be addressed to

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