Five species of bats, Myotis nattereri, M. macrodactylus, Miniopterus fuliginosus, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum and R. cornutus were found to forage in the same habitats in southern Kyushu, Japan. M. nattereri fed mainly on Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, Diptera and Araneae, the proportions of each of these in the diet fluctuating seasonally, however, Lepidoptera and Coleoptera, especially, were consumed selectively. Their available prey items ranged in body length from 5-13 mm in length. M. macrodactylus preyed mainly on Diptera, Trichoptera and Lepidoptera, that were larger (7-20 mm) than those eaten by M. nattereri. Small or medium-sized Lepidoptera constituted the bulk of M. fuliginosus' diet in summer. R. ferrumequinum fed chiefly on larger Diptera, Coleoptera and Lepidoptera measuring 8-45 mm in body length, and clearly selected beetles despite these being relatively few in the trap samples. Lepidoptera and Diptera measuring 7-23 mm were important dietary components for R. cornutus, and despite their abundance being relatively low in summer moths were selectively preyed upon. These five bat species selectively hunted particular prey species in addition to taking food opportunistically. Through differences in both foraging-site and in prey selection, they seem to be able to coexist in the same habitat.
1998 The Mammalogical Society of Japan