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A Pallas's long-tongued bat (Glossophaga soricina) is pollinating a San Francisco or old man cactus flower (Espostoa frutescens) in southern Ecuador. This cactus is endemic to Ecuador, known only from a narrow belt of aridity in one major river valley and its tributaries. Its flowers do not open until well after sundown and close long before sunrise. My photographs provide the first documentation of its being pollinated by bats. The furry material around its flowers absorbs bat echolocation signals, making the flowers more sonically visible to approaching bats. Pollination
MM8034120515EC13990AndesCactaceaeEcuadorMerlin Tuttle's Bat ConservationOld man's cactus Cactaceae Espostoa frutescensPallas's longtongued bat Glossophaga soricinaPhyllostomidae pollinatingSouth AmericaSusudelbatbat conservationcutemammalphotographywildlife photography