Conservation Studies of Long-Nosed Bats in New Mexico

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a leptoncyteris curasoae or lesser long-nosed bat
A leptoncyteris curasoae or lesser long-nosed bat

Three species of nectar- and pollen-feeding bats unique to the southwestern United States may be critical to the health and maintenance of ecosystems in the U.S./Mexico borderland area. The lesser long-nosed bat (Leptonycteris yerbabuenae) and greater long-nosed bat (Leptonycteris nivalis ) are endangered; the Mexican long-tongued bat (Choeronycteris mexicana) is noted by some as being a species of concern. All three species may be jeopardized by vandalism and destruction of roosting sites and loss of habitat and food resources. The Bureau of Land Management needs updated information on nectar-feeding bats as a part of their conservation activities in southwestern New Mexico. FORT researchers are completing studies on the distribution, abundance, and activity patterns of the two species of long-nosed bats in southern New Mexico. Of considerable interest is the recent discovery of a significant new roost on BLM lands, containing the largest aggregation of these bats found to date in New Mexico.