|The Mammals of Texas -
Mexican Long-tongued Bat
Chiroptera : Family
Phyllostomidae : Choeronycteris mexicana Tschudi
Description. A medium-sized bat with a
long, slender muzzle and prominent nasal leaf. A minute
tail is present and extends less than halfway to the edge
of the interfemoral membrane. Color is sooty gray to
brownish. Dental formula: I 2/0, C 1/1, Pm 2/3, M 3/3 X 2
= 30. External measurements average: total length, 85 mm;
tail, 10 mm; foot, 14 mm; ear, 16 mm; forearm, 44 mm.
Weight, 25 g.
Distribution in Texas. A Mexican species
that enters the United States in extreme southern Texas,
New Mexico, and Arizona. The single Texas record is from
Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge in Hidalgo County.
Habits. These bats inhabit deep
canyons where they use caves and mine tunnels as day
roosts. They also have been found in buildings and often
are associated with big-eared bats (Plecotus).
C. mexicana feeds on fruit,
pollen, nectar, and probably insects. Because of their
longer tongue, they may be able to recover nectar from a
greater variety of night-blooming plants than the other
nectar feeding bat in Texas Leptonycteris
Parturition occurs from June to early
July in Arizona and New Mexico with young reported as
early as mid-April in Sonora, Mexico. A single young is
born per female. One of us (Schmidly) collected a
pregnant C. mexicana in May, which gave birth to a
young bat shortly after capture, in the San Carlos
Mountains of northern Tamaulipas, Mexico, which is no
more than 241 km south of Santa Ana Wildlife Refuge.
Pregnant and lactating females have been recorded in
March and June in Coahuila, Mexico, to the south of the
Photo credit: Merlin D. Tuttle, Bat Conservation