Desmodus draculae Morgan, Linares & Ray, 1988

Giant vampire bat



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: subfossil; 1500 (Fisher & Blomberg, 2012)

IUCN RedList status: Extinct


This species is only known from sub-fossil remains, and may have survived into historical times. However, there is no evidence to back this up and it's extinction date is unknown. The IUCN has removed their assessment of this species (Turvey, 2008) in 2016, thus implying that it became extinct pre-1500.



Central and South America (Argentina?, Belize, Brazil)












Original scientific description:

Morgan, G. S., Linares, O. J. and Ray, C. E. (1988). New species of fossil vampire bats (Mammalia: Chiroptera: Desmodontidae) from Florida and Venezuela. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 101(4): 912-928.


Other references:

Arroyo-Cabrales, J., and O.J. Polaco. (2008). Fossil bats from Mesoamerica. Arquivos do Museu Nacional 66: 155-160.

Arroyo-Cabrales, J., and C. E. Ray. (1997). Revisión de los vampiros fósiles (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae, Desmodontinae) de México. In J. Arroyo Cabrales and O. J. Polaco (eds.) Homenaje al Profesor Ticul Álvarez, pp. 69-86. Colección Científica, Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, México, D. F.

Cartelle, C. (1994). Tempo Passado. Mamíferos do Pleistoceno em Minas Gerais. Editora Palco, ACESITA [Assessoria de Comunicação da Compania Aços Especiais Itabira], Belo Horizonte, 131 pp.

Cartelle, C, and V. S. Abuhid. (1994). Chiroptera do Pleistoceno final-Holoceno da Bahia. Acta Geologica Leopoldensia 17: 429-440.

Czaplewski, N.J., and C. Cartelle. (1998). Pleistocene bats from cave deposits in Bahia, Brazil. Journal of Mammalogy 79: 784-803.

Czaplewski, N. J., J. Krejca, and T. E. Miller. (2003). Late Quaternary bats from Cebada Cave, Chiquibul Cave System, Belize. Caribbean Journal of Science 39: 23-33.

Fisher, Diana O. and Blomberg, Simon P. (2012). Inferring Extinction of Mammals from Sighting Records, Threats, and Biological Traits. Conservation Biology 26(1): 57-67.

Pardiñas, U. F. J. and Tonni, E. P. (2000). A giant vampire (Mammalia, Chiroptera) in the Late Holocene from the Argentinean pampas: paleoenvironmental significance. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 160(3-4): 213-221. [Abstract]

Teta, Pablo et al. (2014). Micromamíferos, cambio climático e impacto antrópico: ¿Cuánto han cambiado las comunidades del sur de América del Sur en los últimos 500 años? Therya 5(1): 7-38.

Trajano, E. and de Vivo, M. (1991). Desmodus draculae Morgan, Linares, and Ray, 1988, reported for southeastern Brasil, with paleoecological comments (Phyllostomidae, Desmodontinae). Mammalia 55(3): 456-459.

Turvey, S. (2008). Desmodus draculae. In: IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.4. (http// Downloaded on 18 January 2011.

Turvey, Samuel T. (2009). Holocene mammal extinctions, pp. 41-61. In: Turvey, Samuel T. (ed.). Holocene Extinctions. Oxford, UK & New York, USA: Oxford University Press. xii + 352 pp.

Turvey, Samuel T. and Fritz, Susanne A. (2011). The ghosts of mammals past: biological and geographical patterns of global mammalian extinction across the Holocene. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 366(1577): 2564-2576. [Supplementary Information]

Waterton, C. (1825). Wanderings in South America. J. Mawman, London.


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