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Egyptian Fruit Bat Fact Sheet

  • Latin Name

    Rousettus aegyptiacus
  • Class

    Mammals
  • Order

    Chiroptera
  • Range

    The Egyptian fruit bat is broadly distributed, inhabiting much of sub-Saharan Africa as well as northern Africa, the Middle East and Pakistan.

  • Habitat

    The Egyptian fruit bat favors forest and grassland habitats where it can find the fruit that makes up its diet.

  • Niche

    As their name indicates, Egyptian fruit bats feed almost exclusively on soft fruits, such as dates, fig, apples and apricots. They are nocturnal, flying out at night in search of food. The species is one of few fruit-eating bats to roost in caves. In Africa, colonies can include up to 9,000 bats. Middle Eastern colonies are smaller, generally ranging from 50-500 individuals.

  • Life History

    Female fruit bats give birth after a gestation period of 105-120 days. There is usually just one offspring. It clings to the mother for the first three weeks, until it's able to hang on its own. Bats can fly at three months, at which point they begin foraging for their own food.

  • Special Adaptations

    Bats of the Rousettus genus, including Egyptian fruit bats, are the only fruit-eating bat species to use echolocation to navigate. The species produces sounds and uses their echoes to identify objects in their surroundings.

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