The bat genus Scotophilus Leach, 1821 is poorly known from islands in the western Indian Ocean. S. borbonicus (É. Geoffroy, 1803) was originally described in the early 19th century from La Réunion on the basis of two specimens. Its presence on that island has not been subsequently documented. The holotype specimen has been lost and the lectotype is in a very poor state of preservation, further complicating a proper diagnosis of this taxon. S. borbonicus has also been reported from Madagascar, but these records are without clear documentation. Little information is available on S. robustus A. Milne-Edwards, 1881, a Malagasy endemic. On the basis of recently discovered old specimens and newly collected material from Madagascar we reevaluate the species limits of members of this genus. Three species of Scotophilus are documented on Madagascar, one of which is new to science and described herein. This new species, S. tandrefana n. sp., is distinguished from the other species occurring on Madagascar and elsewhere in the world by pelage coloration and cranial and dental measurements.
Mammalia, Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae, Scotophilus, Madagascar, La Réunion, new species.