Livingstone’s Flying Fox

Livingstone's Flying Fox

The generation length of the Livingstone’s flying fox is unknown, but is estimated to be 8.1 years.

Generation length for the wild population of the Livingstone’s flying fox is unknown, but several demographic parameters can be derived from the studbook for captive bats of this species.

Females do not reproduce during the first few years of life in captivity. The minimum dam age at first reproduction has been 3.4 years, whereas the average dam age at first reproduction is 5.9 years, and the average age of females giving birth is elevated (of all dams born in captivity that have since died or are >10 years of age, mean age when giving birth = 8.1 years).

Thus, based on studbook data, this last figure of 8.1 years represents our best estimate of the generation length of the captive population. This estimate may be conservative as most (75%) of these females are still alive and at least some presumably will reproduce again at a later age.

It is unclear to what extent the generation length of the captive population correlates with the generation length of the wild population of the Livingstone’s flying fox. However, the generation length of captive individuals correlates well with the few published generation length values for wild populations of other Pteropus species.

Generation length values for the captive population of P. livingstonii correlate well with the only published generation length values for wild Pteropus. Further, an estimate derived from taxonomically adjusted allometric equations for mammals suggests generation length for the Livingstone’s flying fox is 8.1 years. Thus, the captive estimate appears in line with estimates for wild populations, and conservative estimates of the generation length in the wild population of P. livingstonii appear to be 8.1 years.


Image | © Aardwolf6886, Some Rights Reserved (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Fox, Luly, Mitchell, Maclean, & Westcott, 2008; Pacifici, et al., 2013; Sewall, Young, Trewhella, Rodríguez-Clark, & Granek, 2016; Tidemann & Nelson, 2011)

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