Egyptian Fruit Bat

Egyptian Fruit Bat at Wingham Wildlife Park

They have a wingspan that averages 60cm, with a body length of around 15cm, weighing around 160g.

Habitat and Distribution
The Egyptian fruit bat is found throughout the Middle East and Africa, except in the desert regions of the Sahara.
Like all bats, they are nocturnal spending their days roosting in trees or caves, often with large groups, emerging from the roost to forage for food in the late evening, and return just before dawn.

They have a life span of 10-15 years in the wild and 25-30 in captivity.

These bats are frugivorous, meaning that they are herbivores that prefer fruit. They consume large amounts of fruit each night.

Groups and Breeding
Females typically give birth to a single baby each year, but occasionally twins are born, after a gestation period of 115-120 days. The young are carried by the female until they are able to hang from the roost on their own (around 6 weeks old), then they are left in the roost while the mother forages for food. Once the baby can fly (around 3 months old) it will leave the roost on its own to hunt for food. Offspring typically stay with the same colony as the parents for their entire lives.

The most common come from owls, hawks, snakes and farmers who poison them to stop the loss of crops, as the bats see the farmers produce as an easy source of food.

Interesting Facts

  • Males are larger than females and can be easily distinguished by their large scrotal sack.
  • The baobab tree relies almost exclusively on fruit bats to disperse its seeds.