Bats in my porch: 12. Grooming

posted in: Fauna, Feathers-maintenance, Videography | 1

Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis), like all other bats, indulge in self-grooming most of the time when they are roosting. The bats arrive at the roosting site covered with plant sap, pollen and sometimes drops of water from the rain (above left). Grooming also removes ectoparasites. The images on the above-right shows a meticulously groomed bat after about half an hour of vigorous grooming.

Bats also indulge in allogrooming or mutual (also known as directional) grooming. And mothers groom their young to facilitate recognition between each other.

Grooming involves licking, nibbling or picking at the fur. The tongue is used on the fur and wings (above left), the digits are used to clean the fur (above right). At the same time the claws of the free foot (the other is clinging on to the roost) does areas that are out of reach of the tongue (below). The claws are then regularly licked cleaned.

YC Wee
August 2014

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