In the Lund wind tunnel we have studied flight of two closely related bat species, but which have a very different movement ecology. Glossophaga soricina is a small nectar feeding bat that lives his whole life in a relatively small area within the rain forest, where it roosts in trees and feeds from flowers. The second bat species is Leptonycteris yerbabuenae, it is a migratory nectar feeding bat that also performs every night long commuting flights from its roosting site to different feeding areas.
By capturing the wake dynamics behind bats flying in the Lund wind tunnel across a range of flight speeds, we were able to estimate the relative flight performance for both species. We found that the migratory bat (L. yerbabuenae) flies more efficient at high speeds, while the non-migrant (G. soricina) is more efficient at low flight speeds. This suggests that both species are well adapted to their relative movement ecology.
Last modified 16 Oct 2012