Bats in my porch: 22. Mating again

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On 4th October 2014, there was, as always, a dominant male Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) hanging in the porch (above). As usual, he was the first to be there, well before 19:00 hours. His presence attracted a few females and juveniles.

The colony of about eight bats will only by there when both the spotlights are switched on. During this period, the bats would hang from the wooden strips. A few would fly out to return later. Other bats would fly in, some trying to attack the dominant male. Should the spotlights be left on till after midnight, most of the bats would remain until then. Only when the lights were switched off would the bats fly off, usually a few at a time. On nights when the lights were not switched on, the dominant male and two to three others, seldom more, would be present. But they do not remain for long.

On this particular night, there was the dominant male courting a female (see video). Facing him was a secondary male, recognised by his wing flapping behaviour – similar to that of the dominant male but not as vigorous or as consistent.

Suddenly the dominant male grabbed the female, turned her around and copulated with her. At that moment the secondary male flew off. Once copulation was completed, the female similarly flew off, leaving the dominant male flapping his wings vigorously and approaching the remaining females.

YC Wee
Singapore
October 2014

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