Miniopterus schreibersii (Kuhl 1819) Long-Winged Bat
Hebrew name: כנפן, kanfan
Global Threat: NT – Near Threatened
Regional Threat: EN (A4ac,B) – Endangered
Distribution area: The species is known from four deep roosting caves in the Upper Galilee, and from Mt. Hermon at altitudes above 1000 m.
Historic distribution: Dor (in Makin 1977) reported that the species was very common in the Mediterranean region in the 1940s: thousands of bats were seen in the Ezba Cave (Carmel) and hundreds in the Alma Cave (Upper Galilee). Additional reports of this species came from caves on the fringes of the Hula Valley, in the Lower Galilee, the Zevulun Valley, the Herzliyya Cave and the Te’omim Cave (Judean Mountains). The species was common in the 1950s and there was a report of the collection of 500 specimens in the Herzliyya Cave (Makin 1977). Makin (1977) reported a lone bat from a cave in Bet Guvrin in the 1970s.
Typical Habitat: Deep caves.
Threat and Disturbance Factors:
1. Insecticide use in agricultural areas.
2. Human visitors to roosting and wintering caves.
Factors that led to population decline in the past:
1. In the 1940s and 1950s: bat collection by scientists.
2. From the 1960s to the mid-80s: poisoning by activity to eliminate fruit bats in shared caves.
Population Size: The long-winged bat ranges over an area of less than 1000 km2 in Israel. The species is currently known from only four caves in the Upper Galilee whose total population is less than 5000.
Fluctuations in Population Size: The population apparently declined during the 1950s and 1960s and is much reduced.
Isolation between Subpopulations: Unknown.
Necessary Steps for Species Preservation:
1. Reducing insecticide use in agriculture.
2. Protecting caves used for roosting, wintering and breeding by the species.