Personal Collection: Rachel Page Panama Bat Collection

Collection Information

Institution Name: 
Personal Collection
Status of Collection: 
Collection Description: 

Our project investigates the genetic diversity of bats and associated ectoparasitic bat flies
(Streblidae and Nycteribiidae), in Central America. In an innovative approach, barcodes of aerial
insectivorous bats, an important but often undersampled component of local bat assemblages, are
collected together with species‐specific reference calls that function as acoustic vouchers for these
species. To obtain reference calls, captured and identified aerial insectivorous bats are recorded with
specialized bat detectors upon release. Representative echolocation calls can only be recorded when
bats are flying freely in an open area. This procedure prohibits the collection of a conventional museum
specimen but also provides the basis for non‐invasive acoustic studies that are rapidly becoming more
common and widespread. A barcoding approach, however, allows collecting an essential and
complementary genetic voucher for the animals. Knowledge of Neotropical bat flies is limited, thus this
barcoding study is expected to alleviate taxonomic uncertainty within this group and add substantial
new information on diversity and ecology (e.g. host specificity) of these parasites. As bat flies can spread
pathogens between individuals, our approach will also provide essential basic information for disease
ecology in bats.
*** These vouchers are currently at STRI ***

Collection Content Type: 
Preservation Type: 
Access Eligibility and Rules: 
Cool URI:

Collection's Mailing Address

Mailing Address 1: 
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
Mailing Address 2: 
Apartado 0843-03092
Mailing Address 3: 
Postal/Zip Code: 
Apartado 0843-03092

Collection's Primary Contact

Primary Contact: 
  • Created: 29 August 2017 - 8:02pm EDT
  • Updated: 30 August 2017 - 10:21am EDT