Thai National Parks

Mammals of Thailand

Species of Thailand

Naked-rumped pouched bat

Binomial name: Saccolaimus saccolaimus, Coenraad Jacob Temminck, 1838

The naked-rumped pouched bat (Saccolaimus saccolaimus), also known as pouched tomb bat, is a species of sac-winged bat in the family Emballonuridae.

It is found in Australia, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and possibly Myanmar.

The animal is known as පැස් පිරි-වවුලා (paes piri wawulaa) in Sinhala.


Head and body length is 8-9cm. Forearm 7cm. Wingspan 45cm.

S. saccolaimus or T. saccolaimus (Payne et al., 1985) have dark-reddish brown or blackish brown upperparts which are irregularly marked with white patches. Their underparts are usually white, but in one colour phase it can be dark brown. They have no wing pouch or in other words, a poorly developed radio-metacarpal pouch. They have a distinct glandular pouch on the throat. The ear is short and broadly rounded with ribbing on the interior of the pinna with a short tragus which has a semicircular margin. It has long and narrow wings with black skin and translucent whitish portions. It is the largest species with the whitest wings.


India and Sri Lanka through South-East Asia to Borneo, Sumatra, Java and Timor (Indonesia); New Guinea; North-East Queensland (Australia); Guadalcanal island (Solomon Islands). Bat-detector observations suggest that the species is very common in west-Java, whereas further in the east (e.g. Bali) it is less common and its relative Taphozous melanopogon dominates in dry and coastal areas.

Biology and ecology

This medium sized bat roosts in hollow trees and rock crevices and sometimes houses in colonies varying from a few individuals to a few hundred. Roosting bats maintain individual spacing. They are alert at the roost and scurry all over the roost substrate if disturbed. Echolocation clicks produced by this bat in flight are audible. females give birth to a single young per litter.

Bat-detector observations have revealed this species to be common in cities, villages, above rice fields, other (wet) cultivated areas and forest edges and has been heard up to 2000m in mountainous areas. This species is not commonly heard hunting over continuous forest. It is one of the earliest species to emerge and can often be seen hunting together with swiftlets about 15–40 metres above the ground, estimated from frequent visual observations. The built of this species suggests it to be an open air forager. Individuals are usually seen hunting in wide circles over several hundred of metres. They have been seen feeding on termite swarms when available.

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Scientific classification

Saccolaimus saccolaimus

Common names

  • English:
    • Bare-rumped sheathtail-bat
    • Naked-rumped pouched bat
    • Pouch-bearing bat
    • Pouched bat


  • Saccoliamus pluto, Gerrit Smith Miller, Jr (1910)
  • Taphozous saccolaimus, Edward Blyth (1844)
  • Taphozous pulcher, Edward Blyth (1844)
  • Taphozous crassus, Edward Blyth (1844)
  • Taphozous saccolaimus, Coenraad Jacob Temminck (1838)

Conservation status

Least Concern (IUCN3.1)

Least Concern (IUCN3.1)


Naked-rumped pouched bat distribution

Range Map