Glauconycteris superba Hayman, 1939

Cakenberghe, Victor Van, Tungaluna, Guy-Crispin Gembu, Akawa, Prescott Musaba, Seamark, Ernest & Verheyen, Erik, 2017, The bats of the Congo and of Rwanda and Burundi revisited (Mammalia: Chiroptera), European Journal of Taxonomy 382 (382), pp. 1-327 : 88

publication ID 10.5852/ejt.2017.382

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Glauconycteris superba Hayman, 1939


Glauconycteris superba Hayman, 1939 View in CoL

Fig. 40 View Fig A–B

Glauconycteris superba Hayman, 1939: 219 View in CoL .

* Glauconycteris superba superba Hayman, 1939 View in CoL .

At the time of Hayman et al. (1966) only two specimens of this remarkably coloured bat were known: the holotype of the species from the DRC and a specimen from Ghana, which was considered to belong to a separate subspecies, G. superba sheila Hayman, 1947 . In 1972, a third specimen was collected in Côte d’Ivoire. In the next 40 years, not a single specimen of this species was found, but in 2012 two animals were collected: one in the Bangangai Game Reserve, South Sudan ( Reeder et al. 2013), and one from Mbiye Island, near Kisangani, Tshopo Province, DRC ( Gembu Tungaluna et al. 2013: 18). In 2015, another specimen was collected on Mbiye Island. This is the first time the species was collected at the same locality, suggesting that G. superba is not as rare as was assumed during the first 40 years after its initial discovery.

As if to confirm the previous statement, after the manuscript for this paper was submitted, Ing et al. (2016) and Hassanin et al. (2017) reported on ten additional specimens from Mbiye island and the Yoko Forest Reserve (00°17′ N, 25°17′ E). Hassanin et al. (2017) also described a new species of Glauconycteris , which is not covered in the current paper.

Based on a number of morphological characters, Reeder et al. (2013) created a separate genus for superba : Niumbaha . These characters include the considerably larger skull; more striking body patterns; not excessively foreshortened (i.e., longer) rostrum; more robust muzzle; unreduced relative canine size; unelongated wing tips (second phalanxes); more robust, subquadrangular ears, with a larger free lobe at the inner margin; a more strongly curved tragus; position of the nostrils. Although these are quite important differences, we remain reluctant to follow Reeder et al. (2013) in separating superba from the genus Glauconycteris , due to the fact that the morphological characters were probably only examined on one specimen and some of them might be the result of the large size of superba . The rejection of Niumbaha as a separate genus is confirmed by the DNA analyses by Hassanin et al. (2017).

Given the fact that G. superba was rarely collected in the past, it is very difficult to assess its general distribution. The SDM map suggests that it may occur in the forest zones of West and Central Africa.














Glauconycteris superba Hayman, 1939

Cakenberghe, Victor Van, Tungaluna, Guy-Crispin Gembu, Akawa, Prescott Musaba, Seamark, Ernest & Verheyen, Erik 2017

Glauconycteris superba

Hayman 1939: 219

Glauconycteris superba

superba Hayman 1939
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