Pg. 26-28 The Egyptian fruitbat Rousettus aegyptiacus as a problem animal in the Transvaal

Fruit bat damage in litchi orchards in the Transvaal was studied during 1972-1977. Two species were involved, namely Epomophorus wahlbergi and Rousettus aegyptiacus, but the latter predominated. Each bat consumes 8-9 litchis per night. On occasions up to 2 200 Rousettus bats entered an orchard, consuming up to 309 kg of litchis per night. Damage was found to be localised and less than that estimated by the fruit growers. Various control measures were tested, but only mist nets proved to be effective in curtailing numbers.

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