Scientists from the Zoological Survey of India have discovered a new species of bamboo-dwelling bat in Ri Bhoi district of Meghalaya.
- The species, found near the forested patch of Nongkhyllem Wildlife Sanctuary, has been named Glischropus meghalayanus.
- The present discovery is the first report of a thick-thumbed bat not only from India but also from South Asia.
- Thick-thumbed bats of the genus Glischropus are currently composed of four recognised species from Southeast Asia.
- The newly discovered species is small in size and has a dark brown colour with sulphur yellow belly.
- Bamboo-dwelling bats are a particular kind of bats living in the internodes of bamboos with specialised morphological characters that help them to adopt to the life inside a bamboo.
- With this new discovery, the total number of bat species known from India stands at 131.
- Meghalaya, a State with a small geographical area, harbours the highest bat diversity in the country with 67 species, which is about 51% of total bat species in the country.
- From the same forested patches outside the Nongkhyllem Wildlife Sanctuary, scientist found another species of disk-footed bat Eudiscopus denticulus which was a new record in India.