A new bat species of the genus Myotis was recently discovered on the Nimba Mountains in Guinea, at an altitude of about 1400 meters (the two animals captured by the researchers were flying out of an abandoned mine adit).
The new species is called Myotis nimbaensis, after the place it lives in.
These bats form colonies that may be small (down to just single individuals), their diet is still unknown, and they're tiny enough to easily fit in a researcher's hand.
Their most striking feature, though, is their color.
They have, indeed, a "bright orange fur on the head and the ruff around the neck" (P), with an "orange-brown thumb and a brown foot" (P) and, unlike other related bat species, a lack of pronounced black spots on their face.
Moreover, they are "strongly dichromatic with black wing membranes and orange along the digits and forearm" (P).
Both wing dichromatism and reddish to yellowish fur, however, are not unusual in the subgenus (Chrysopteron) M. nimbaensis belongs to.
Myotis nimbaensis is the 11th species of the Myotis genus found in Africa (mainland) out of over 120 species existing almost all around the world.
The researchers think that there are good chances there be more species to be discovered, and say that their finding "highlights the critical importance of the Nimba Mountains as a center of bat diversity and endemism in sub-Saharan Africa" (P).
The researchers expect, in fact, that, as M. nimbaensis is "an uncommon to rare endemic with a very small geographic range" species (P), it be already critically endangered.
Now, dear reader, enough with the details, it's time for the real important stuff. This dumb blog, in the following cartoon, will tell you the true reason why, these bats, are orange!
|Myotis nimbaensis bat according to @sciencemug|
The paper this cartoon is about (P)