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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless credited to others.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2024







Theobald's Tomb Bat

Fig 1

Fig 2

Fig 3











Family : Emballonuridae
Species : Taphozous theobaldi

Forearm Length : up to 7.6 cm

Theobald's Tomb Bat is a widespread, though relatively uncommon species.  It inhabits forested areas and roosts mainly in caves. Large roosts numbering thousands of bats have been found.

Dorsally its fur is brown to dark brown, ventrally it is more pale. The chin is covered in fur, and some males may have a narrow 'beard' of darker fur. The limbs and flight membrane are dark brown.

The ears are large and rounded, the eyes of moderate size, and the tail around 25 mm in length. The wings are long and narrow.

The specimens shown here were found roosting in a temple ruin, part of the Angkor temple complex in central Cambodia. The area is surrounded by mature, secondary dry deciduous forest. These bats were identified with reasonable confidence as Theobald's Tomb Bat by their fur colour, the presence of fur on the chin, minor dark beards, and absence of fur on the legs. (However, the possibility that these two bats are darker specimens of the Black-bearded Tomb Bat cannot be fully discounted).

Theobald's Tomb Bat is confirmed to range from India, Myanmar and Thailand through to Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.

Fig 1 : Adult specimen roosting inside a ruined temple building in central Cambodia.

Fig 2 : Another specimen at the same roost, with a narrow 'beard' of darker fur which suggests it is a male.

Fig 3 : These bats were found in a ruined temple building, part of the Angkor complex of central Cambodia.

References : M3, M5