Study

A comparison of the effectiveness of methods of deterring pteropodid bats from feeding on commercial fruit in Madagascar

  • Published source details Raharimihaja T.E.A., Rakotoarison J.L.M. & Andrianaivoarivelo R.A. (2016) A comparison of the effectiveness of methods of deterring pteropodid bats from feeding on commercial fruit in Madagascar. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 8, 9512-9524.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Use non-lethal measures to prevent bats from accessing fruit in orchards to reduce human-wildlife conflict

Action Link
Bat Conservation
  1. Use non-lethal measures to prevent bats from accessing fruit in orchards to reduce human-wildlife conflict

    A replicated, randomized, controlled study in 2012–2013 at two lychee Litchi chinensis growing sites in Madagascar (Raharimihaja et al 2016) found that using an organic deterrent or plastic flags reduced lychee damage caused by Madagascan flying foxes Pteropus rufus, and ringing bells caused most bats to fly away. At both sites, the average proportion or number of lychees damaged by flying foxes/fruit cluster was lower with an organic deterrent (Site 1 = 5%; Site 2: two fruit/fruit cluster) or plastic flags (Site 1 = 32%; Site 2 = 0.5 fruit/fruit cluster) than with no deterrent (Site 1 = 62%; Site 2 = 11 fruit/fruit cluster). Across both sites, ringing bells resulted in 35 of 44 (80%) flying foxes flying away. Three deterrents were tested at two sites in 2012 and 2013. An organic deterrent (‘Plantskydd’) made from dried blood and vegetable oil was mixed with water and sprayed onto 19–27 lychee clusters/site (each with 60–125 fruit), 15 days before lychees ripened. Bright pink plastic flags (1 x 0.5 m) were hung 1 m from 18–20 randomly selected lychee clusters/site (each with 100–150 fruit). Controls were 21–32 lychee clusters/site with no deterrents. On three occasions, six bells (12-cm diameter) were hung in two lychee trees for four consecutive nights. Bells were rung using a string between 18:00 and 22:00 h when flying foxes attempted to feed on lychees. Lychee damage caused by flying foxes (identified from teeth marks) was monitored daily until lychees were collected by farmers.

    (Summarised by: Anna Berthinussen)

Output references
What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 18

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.


Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust