Fecal samples of 211 bats representing 13 different bat species from 31 locations in the Netherlands were analyzed for the presence of coronaviruses (CoV) using a genus-wide reverse transcription (RT)-polymerase chain reaction. CoVs are known for their high potential for interspecies transmission, including zoonotic transmission with bats as reservoir hosts. For the first time, a group 2 CoV was found in a bat, Pipistrellus pipistrellus, in Europe. This is of particular interest for public health as the reservoir host is a species that is common to urban areas in most of Europe and notorious for its close interactions with humans. Four verspertilionid bat species were found to excrete group 1 CoVs, viz. Myotis daubentonii, M. dasycneme, P. pipistrellus, and Nyctalus noctula. The last species is a newly identified reservoir. The overall prevalence was 16.9% and positive bats were found at multiple widespread locations. The circulating group 1 CoV lineages were rather species associated than location associated.
- acute respiratory syndrome
- chinese horseshoe bats