Troughton's sheathtail bat

Common name: Troughton's sheathtail bat

Scientific name: Taphozous troughtoni

Family: Emballonuridae

Conservation status: This species is listed as Least concern in Queensland (Nature Conservation Act 1992).


Troughton's sheathtail bat is a large of insectivorous bat lacking the throat pouch that most bats in the family Emballonuridae possess, but having a wing pouch. It weighs 20-29 g. Its most distinctive characteristic, however, is the large skull. The fur is olive brown with pale grey guard hairs and reddish-brown posterior regions.

Habitat and distribution

Very little is known about Troughton's sheathtail bat. The species has only been found at three localities close to Mt Isa. The known roosts have been located in open woodland and spinifex hills where it uses subterranean roosts such as caves and abandoned mines, as well as cracks and crevices in rocky escarpments.

Threatening processes

The destruction of roosts is a threat to Troughton's sheathtail bat. A colony in the Native Bee Mine was destroyed when mining activities recommenced.

Recovery actions

  • Prevent further destruction and disturbance of roost sites from mining and other activities.
  • Examine and measure the body features of Troughton's sheathtail bat, and other Taphozous species, to determine physical characteristics that will make it possible to identify separate species in the field.

Related information

Duncan, A, Baker, GB and Montgomery, N (Eds.). (1999) The Action Plan for Australian Bats. Environment Australia, Canberra.

Churchill, S (1998) Australian bats. New Holland, Sydney.

Recovery plan for cave-dwelling bats, Rhinolophus philippinensis, Hipposideros semoni and Taphozous troughtoni 2001-2005.