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Mastozoología neotropical

versión impresa ISSN 0327-9383versión On-line ISSN 1666-0536

Mastozool. neotrop. vol.24 no.2 Mendoza dic. 2017



New records of Micronycteris schmidtorum Sanborn, 1935 (Phyllostomidae, Chiroptera) for northeastern Brazil


Patrício A. da Rocha1, 2, Fábio A. M. Soares3, Daniela Dias4, Jefferson S. Mikalauskas5, Anderson Feijó1, Emmanuel Messias Vilar1, 2, and Marcela R. M. Daher6

1 Laboratório de Mamíferos, Departamento de Sistemática e Ecologia, CCEN, Universidade Federal da Paraíba, Campus I, 58051–900, João Pessoa, Paraiba, Brazil. [Correspondence: <>]
2 Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciências Biológicas (Zoologia), CCEN, Universidade Federal da Paraíba, João Pessoa, Paraiba, Brazil.
3 Programa de Pós-graduação em Ecologia, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.
4 Laboratório de Biologia e Parasitologia de Mamíferos Silvestres Reservatórios, IOC/Fundação Oswaldo Cruz. Manguinhos, Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
5 Programa de Pós-graduação em Biologia Animal, Universidade Federal Rural do Rio de Janeiro, BR 465, Km 7, 23890-000, Seropédica, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
6 Usina Seresta S/A, Fazenda São Mateus s/nº, 57265-000, Zona Rural, Teotônio Vilela, Alagoas, Brazil.

Recibido 8 febrero 2016.
Aceptado 11 abril 2017.
Editor asociado: P Velazco


We present three new records of Micronycteris schmidtorum for the Atlantic Forest of northeastern Brazil. An adult female was collected in the Serra de Itabaiana National Park, Sergipe State; a post-lactating female was caught in the Reserva Particular do Patrimônio Natural Sitio Pau-Brasil, Coruripe, Alagoas State; and an adult female was collected in the Reserva Biológica Guaribas, Paraiba State. These records fill a gap of approximately 800 km between previously known localities of the species.


Novos registros de Micronycteris schmidtorum Sanborn, 1935 (Phyllostomidae, Chiroptera) para o Nordeste do Brasil.

Apresentamos três novos registros de Micronycteris schmidtorum para a Floresta Atlântica do Nordeste do Brasil. Uma fêmea adulta foi coletada no Parque Nacional Serra de Itabaiana, Sergipe; uma fêmea pós-lactante foi capturada na Reserva Patricular do Patrimônio Natural Sítio Pau-Brasil, Coruripe, Alagoas; e uma fêmea adulta foi coletada na Reserva Biológica Guaribas, Paraíba. Nossos registros preenchem uma lacuna de aproximadamente 800 km entre os registros prévios conhecidos da espécie.

Key words: Alagoas; Atlantic Forest; Micronycteris; Paraíba; Sergipe.

Palavras-chaves: Alagoas; Mata Atlântica; Micronycteris; Paraíba; Sergipe.

The genus Micronycteris Gray, 1866 comprises small phyllostomid bats (forearm length: 31- 46 mm) occurring in a variety of habitats in the Neotropical region (Simmons & Voss 1998; Fonseca et al. 2007; Williams & Genoways 2008; Larsen et al. 2011; Siles et al. 2013; Feijó et al. 2015a). Species of Micronycteris constitute a large fraction of the gleaning-insectivorous bat fauna of Neotropical moist forests, where many species can occur sympatrically (Simmons et al. 2002). Among the 12 species of the genus currently recognized (Fonseca et al. 2007; Wil­liams & Genoways 2008; Larsen et al. 2011; Siles et al. 2013), eight occur in Brazil (Nogueira et al. 2014) and exhibit diverse distributional pat­terns. Whereas some species are restricted to a single biome, such as M. homezorum Pirlot, 1967 restricted to the Amazon, other species, such as M. megalotis (Gray, 1842), M. minuta (Gervais, 1856), and M. schmidtorum Sanborn, 1935, are widespread (Williams & Genoways 2008; Paglia et al. 2012; Moras et al. 2014).

The geographical distribution of Micronycteris schmidtorum includes the Yucatan Peninsula and northeastern Chiapas, Mexico, through Central America to Venezuela, Peru, and Brazil (Williams & Genoways 2008). In Brazil, it has been reported from the Amazon (Bernard 2001; Bernard et al. 2001; Bernard & Fenton 2002; Nunes et al. 2005; Martins et al. 2006; Bernard et al. 2011; Silva et al. 2013), the Atlantic Forest (Ascorra et al. 1991; Tavares & Taddei 2003; Falcão et al. 2005; Faria et al. 2006), Caatinga (Ascorra et al. 1991; Simmons 1996; Sá-Neto & Marinho-Filho 2013), and Cerrado biomes (Louzada et al. 2015; Félix et al. 2016; Olímpio et al. 2016). Despite its widespread distribution, M. schmidtorum is rarely captured (Escobedo- Cabrera et al. 2006) and there are few specimens deposited in collections (Simmons 1996), re­sulting in limited information about its biology. M. schmidtorum has been found roosting in tree holes and has been collected in a variety of habitats, including evergreen forest, thorn forest, swamps, pastures, and orchards (Wil­liams & Genoways 2008).

Here, we present new records of M. schmidtorum for northeastern Brazil, based on three specimens collected in frag­ments of the Atlantic Forest in the states of Alagoas, Paraiba and Sergipe. The specimens from Alagoas and Sergipe were collected and fixed in 10% formalin and preserved in 70% alcohol with the skulls removed and cleaned; the specimen from Paraiba is preserved as dry skin and skull. The individuals were deposited as voucher specimens in the mammal collec­tion of the Museu de História Natural of the Universidade Federal de Alagoas (MUFAL), the Coleção Adriano Lúcio Peracchi (ALP), Uni­versidade Federal Rural do Rio de Janeiro, and in the mammal collection of the Universidade Federal da Paraiba (UFPB). Six external and eleven cranial measurements (Table 1) were taken using a digital caliper accurate to 0.01 mm and following the measurements delimited by Vizotto & Taddei (1973). Identifications were based on analyses of the characters reported as relevant for identification of the different species of Micronycteris (Simmons 1996; Sim­mons & Voss 1998; Williams & Genoways 2008; Larsen et al. 2011; Siles et al. 2013; Feijó et al. 2015a).

Table 1
Selected measurements (mm) of the Micronycteris schmidtorum specimens from Brazilian Atlantic Forest of Northeastern Brazil and other localities in South America.

A non-reproductive adult female (ALP 8897) was collected with a mist net in the Serra de Itabaiana National Park (10°40 S, 37°25 W), Sergipe), and preliminary identified as Micronycteris sp. by Mikalauskas (2005). This reserve is located within the municipalities of Areia Branca and Itabaiana, and covers a total area of 7966 ha. It is characterized by extensive deforestation and a complex of habitats ranging from shrubby-arboreal vegetation on sandy soils to dense forests along water courses (Carvalho & Vilar 2005).

The second specimen, a post-lactating female (MUFAL 0245; Figs. 1 and 2), was caught in 2014 with a mist net set in the under­story in the Reserva Particular do Patrimônio Natural (RPPN) Sitio Pau-Brasil (10°17’07” S, 36°21’07” W), Coruripe, Alagoas. This area is a fragment of approximately 300 ha of the Atlan­tic Forest in an advanced stage of regeneration, with trees reaching about 25 meters in height. It harbors a large concentration of Brazilwood (Paubrasilia echinata), an endangered species (Varty 1998).

Fig. 1.
Micronycteris schmidtorum from Alagoas, Northeastern Brazil (MUFAL 0245): A. Pale gray ventral fur, B. Dorsal fur; C. white arrow indicates the interauricular membrane with a moderate notch. Scale bar = 10 mm.

Fig. 2.
Ventral, dorsal e lateral view of the skull, and lateral view of mandible of Micronycteris schmidtorum from Alagoas, Northeastern Brazil (MUFAL 0245). The insert to the right shows the size differences among the lower premolars. Scale bar = 10 mm.

The third specimen, a non-reproductive adult female (UFPB 9240), was collected in the Reserva Biológica Guaribas (6°43’44.9” S, 35°08’22.4” W), Mamamguape, Paraiba state. The area is composed of a mosaic of seasonal semi-deciduous forests and typical savanna formations on sandy soils, with an average annual rainfall and temperature of 1700 mm and 24°C-26°C, respectively (Barbosa et al. 2011). Zeppelini et al. (2016) reported the presence of Micronycteris schmidtorum for the state of Paraiba, but after a reexamination of the specimen (UFPB 9792) we reidentified it as M. megalotis (dark-bellied group), making our M. schmidtorum record the first report of this species for the state.

Our specimens conform closely to the combination of characters that distinguishes M. schmidtorum from other closely related spe­cies, as well from other species of pale-bellied Micronycteris (M. brosseti, M. homezorum, M. minuta, M. sanborni, and M. yatesi). M. schmidtorum is easily distinguished from the dark-bellied M. buriri, M. giovanniae, M. hirsuta, M. matses, M. megalotis, and M. microtis by its pale ventral pelage (Sim­mons and Voss 1998; Simmons et al. 2002; Fonseca et al. 2007; Larsen et al. 2011; Siles et al. 2013). Among the pale-bellied species, M. schmidtorum presents the following set of diagnostic characteristics: interauricular mem­brane with a moderate notch (Fig. 1C); dark brown dorsal pelage (Fig. 1B); individual hairs with white bases comprising approximately one-third of the length in the upper back region; calcar slightly longer than hindfoot; metacarpal formulae III<IV<V; mastoid breadth less than zygomatic breadth (Table 1); upper premolars subequal in height and anteroposterior length; second lower premolar shorter that the first and third (Fig. 2) (Simmons 1996; Simmons & Voss 1998; Williams & Genoways 2008). In addition, the measurements of our three speci­mens are close to the variation range known for M. schmidtorum, with small deviations in some traits (Table 1; see Simmons 1996; Sim­mons & Voss 1998; Tavares & Taddei 2003).

Micronycteris schmidtorum is morphologi­cally similar to M. brosseti, being distinguished mainly by size (Simmons & Voss 1998; Tavares & Taddei 2003). According to Simmons & Voss (1998), M. brosseti is one of the smallest species of the genus and consistently smaller than M. schmidtorum in all craniodental measurements. All measurements of our specimens are larger than those reported for M. brosseti (see Simmons & Voss 1998), except ear length, hind foot length, forearm length, and zygomatic breadth.

The specimens MUFAL 0245 and ALP 8897 have the second upper premolar (P4) with a moderated inner posterolingual heel and a poorly developed and rounded lingual cusp. Intraspecific variation in the presence of a lingual cusp in P4 is known to occur in M. schmidtorum (Simmons 1996; Simmons & Voss 1998).

In Brazil, M. schmidtorum has been recorded in 19 localities of 11 Brazilian states (Table 2; Fig. 3). Our records fill a gap of approximately 800 km between previous records (Fig. 3) and increase the known bat diversity of the Sergipe to 51 species (see Rocha et al. 2017), and to 61 species for Paraiba (Feijó & Langguth 2011; Nunes et al. 2013; Vilar et al. 2015; Leal et al. 2014; Feijó et al. 2015b).

Table 2
Locality records of Micronycteris schmidtorum in Brazil. Asterisks indicate the new records for Northeastern Brazil. The code numbers correspond to the records as indicated in Fig. 3.

Fig. 3.
Geographic distribution of Micronycteris schmidtorum in Brazil. Stars: new records from the Sergipe, Alagoas and Paraiba states, Northeast Brazil. Black circles: previous records. The numbers correspond to the records as indicated in the Table 2.


PAR is grateful to CAPES and CNPq for postdoctoral stipends. FAMS thanks FAPESB (process 8200/2015). AF and EMV were supported by CAPES. Part of this study was supported by Rede BioM.A. Inventories: Patterns of diversity, biogeogra­phy and endemism of mammalian, birds, amphibian, drosophila and parasites species in the Atlantic Forest (CNPq - process: 457524 / 2012-0).


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