BatWhile scientists feared that Hill’s horseshoe bat was extinct due to habitat desctruction, the species has actually survived in the Nyungwe rainforest.A critically endangered species of bats has been spotted for the first time in 40 years, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The Hill’s horseshoe bat (Rhinolophus hillorum), listed as critically endangered in 2021, was sighted in the Nyungwe rainforest in Rwanda. Rediscovering the species “was incredible”, Jon Flanders, director for Bat Conservation International (BCI), said in a statement.
"It's astonishing to think that we're the first people to see this bat in so long", he noted.
The bat was rediscovered during a 2019 expedition, however, it took the scientists three years to verify its species.
"We knew immediately that the bat we had captured was unusual and remarkable", chief scientist of the organisation, Winifred Frick, said. "The facial features were exaggerated to the point of comical".
The bat, which once lived across many African countries, including Cameroon, Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Rwanda, is now considered to be endangered due to active mining, quarrying, and deforestation in the region.