JDJCSET | Watershed Studies Institute Research Symposium

Title

Bat Community Structure in Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area Following White-nose Occurrence

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Graduate

Major

Biology

Minor

undeclared

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Terry Derting

Presentation Format

Poster Presentation

Abstract/Description

Bat community dynamics can be altered by white-nose syndrome (WNS) through the rapid decline of susceptible species. Bats are known to partition the use of resources in multiple ways including roosting behavior, diet selection, and spatiotemporal foraging patterns, which enables multi-species coexistence. Our objective was to identify how temporal foraging patterns within the bat community in Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area (LBL) has changed since WNS was first documented in Kentucky in 2011. We used Anabat SD2 acoustic recorders to monitor bat foraging pre-WNS (2010) and post-WNS (2015-2016) from May to September. We monitored bat activity for 35 and 57 detectors nights at eight recurring sites pre- and post-WNS, respectively. Call files were analyzed using Kaleidoscope Pro. The total number of identified calls were 95 per detector night pre-WNS and 131 post-WNS. A correlation matrix of the hourly foraging activity of species indicated that 14 out of 36 species-species interactions increased foraging overlap by at least 50% post-WNS. The most substantial shifts were interactions between big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) and hoary bats (Lasiurus cinereus) with other species. Furthermore, most species shifted their foraging from consistent activity throughout the night pre-WNS to more concentrated activity in the early evening post-WNS, potentially indicating competitive release. A release from competition may provide an opportunity for species to forage optimally around sunset at the time of prey emergence. We will further investigate the temporal foraging activity reported here in relation to prey availability and diet selection at LBL.

Affiliations

Sigma Xi Poster Competition--ONLY, OTHER Affiliation

Other Affiliations

Watershed Studies Institute Research Symposium & Pharris Mini Symposium

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Bat Community Structure in Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area Following White-nose Occurrence

Bat community dynamics can be altered by white-nose syndrome (WNS) through the rapid decline of susceptible species. Bats are known to partition the use of resources in multiple ways including roosting behavior, diet selection, and spatiotemporal foraging patterns, which enables multi-species coexistence. Our objective was to identify how temporal foraging patterns within the bat community in Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area (LBL) has changed since WNS was first documented in Kentucky in 2011. We used Anabat SD2 acoustic recorders to monitor bat foraging pre-WNS (2010) and post-WNS (2015-2016) from May to September. We monitored bat activity for 35 and 57 detectors nights at eight recurring sites pre- and post-WNS, respectively. Call files were analyzed using Kaleidoscope Pro. The total number of identified calls were 95 per detector night pre-WNS and 131 post-WNS. A correlation matrix of the hourly foraging activity of species indicated that 14 out of 36 species-species interactions increased foraging overlap by at least 50% post-WNS. The most substantial shifts were interactions between big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) and hoary bats (Lasiurus cinereus) with other species. Furthermore, most species shifted their foraging from consistent activity throughout the night pre-WNS to more concentrated activity in the early evening post-WNS, potentially indicating competitive release. A release from competition may provide an opportunity for species to forage optimally around sunset at the time of prey emergence. We will further investigate the temporal foraging activity reported here in relation to prey availability and diet selection at LBL.