Rhinolophus ferrumequinum, the greater horseshoe bat, has one of the largest geographic distributions of any bat, ranging from Europe and northern Africa in the east to China, Korea, and Japan in the west. This subspecies, R. f. nippon, is from Japan. Like other members of the genus Rhinolophus, these bats specialize in hunting insects in complex habitats (in and near vegetation). They have an unusual, highly specialized echolocation system that takes advantage of the Doppler shift to separate emitted pulses (calls) and returning echoes in frequency rather than in time. These bats simultaneously emit long, constant frequency calls and listen to returning echoes, and analyze the resulting auditory data to build a complex, dynamic auditory map of their environment. An anatomical feature associated with use of Doppler shift echolocation is an extremely large cochlea, in which the basal turn is tuned to be especially sensitive to the frequency of returning echoes, which are lower frequency than the calls emitted by the bat.
About the Species
This whole preserved specimen was collected from Hopeh, Beijing, China on July 30, 1958. It is now part of the American Museum of Natural History Mammalogy Collections (AMNH 245591). The specimen was made available for scanning by Dr. Nancy Simmons of the American Museum of Natural History. Funding for scanning was provided by a National Science Foundation grant (DEB-9873663) to Dr. Simmons, and funding for scanning and image processing was provided by a National Science Foundation Digital Libraries Initiative grant to Dr. Timothy Rowe of the Department of Geological Sciences, The University of Texas at Austin.
About this Specimen
The entire specimen was scanned by Matthew Colbert on 13 December 2001 along the coronal axis for a total of 741 slices, each slice 0.097 mm thick, with an interslice spacing of 0.097 mm.