Dr Bhargavi Srinivasulu went deep into her research that stretched to almost six years, before announcing the species. (DC File Photo)
HYDERABAD: Eminent zoology scientist from Osmania University Dr Bhargavi Srinivasulu, who discovered a new species of bats, achieved her biggest career high when the species was named ‘Miniopetrus srinii Srini’s Bent-winged Bat’ as a tribute to her amazing finding.
The research papers were submitted on Saturday and the expert committee cleared the papers and conferred the rare honour.
It marks a momentous day for Dr Bhargavi Srinivasulu, her husband Prof. C. Srinivasulu and their son Aditya Srinivasulu, a PhD researcher based at University of Reading UK.
This new species was discovered in 2017 in a cave in Makuta, Kodagu district, Karnataka. Dr Bhargavi Srinivasulu went deep into her research that stretched to almost six years, before announcing the species.
Her jubilant husband, Prof. Srinivasulu, who shared his joy with Deccan Chronicle, said, "It’s a moment to cherish. I was associated with Osmania University from 1990 onwards."
Meanwhile, Dr Bhargavi and Aditya described this cryptic species of bat based on multiple lines of evidence.
Dr Bhargavi said, "We collected specimens of bats from a large subterranean cave in the dense jungles of western ghats in Makuta. We presumed it to be a cryptic species, which we tentatively identified as the small bent-winged bat, Miniopterus pusillus, which is reported from Nicobar Islands, peninsular India, Nepal and the northeast region."
She added, "Our research on Andaman bats revealed that the fauna on the islands are genetically different from those on mainland India. We conducted morphological, cranial, echolocation and genetic studies to determine the relationship between the Makuta specimen and others."
She added "Bent-winged Bats are small-sized bats that live in large colonies of few hundred in caves. They have long wings, which are two and half times their body length, these long wings tend to fold over when bats rest. Hence, the name bent-winged bat. They are found in southern Europe, Africa, Madagascar, Asia, Australia, New Caledonia and Vanuatu. In India, four species of bent-winged bats are known. With our discovery the number has increased to five."