ORCA General Poster Session (Virtual)

Title

Pre-Management Bat Species Diversity at Clarks River National Wildlife Refuge.

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Wildlife biology and conservation

2nd Student Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Sophomore

2nd Student Major

Wildlife biology and conservation

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Terry Derting

Presentation Format

Poster Presentation

Abstract/Description

Clark’s River National Wildlife Refuge (CRNWR) encompasses 3900 acres of mostly secondary bottomland hardwood forest. A forest management plan is being implemented over the next five years at CRNWR that aims, in part, to enhance habitats for bats. Ten bat species were documented at CRNWR using acoustic surveys since 2012, with evening (Nycticeius humeralis), red (Lasiurus borealis), and tri-colored (Perimyotis subflavus) bats being the most common. Acoustical bat call surveys are being used to establish baseline inventories of bat species at each management location. In 2019, we used Pettersson and SM4Bat acoustic recorders to determine bat species presence for two nights at each of the 13 sites located on two management units prior to their treatment. Acoustic data were analyzed using Kaleidoscope Pro. We estimated the understory, midstory, and overstory cover and tree basal area at each site. Of the four land cover types present, plantations had the highest bat diversity with five species. Hardwood forests and xerohydric forests each had four bat species. No bat species were present at the single reforested site. The mean number of identifiable bat calls in each forest type over two nights was low with much variation among sites. There was no significant correlation between bat species diversity and vegetative cover, basal area, or distance to water for sites in any forest type. We anticipate bat species presence will increase over the next decade following implementation of the proposed management treatments.

Spring Scholars Week 2020 Event

Sigma Xi Poster Competition

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Pre-Management Bat Species Diversity at Clarks River National Wildlife Refuge.

Clark’s River National Wildlife Refuge (CRNWR) encompasses 3900 acres of mostly secondary bottomland hardwood forest. A forest management plan is being implemented over the next five years at CRNWR that aims, in part, to enhance habitats for bats. Ten bat species were documented at CRNWR using acoustic surveys since 2012, with evening (Nycticeius humeralis), red (Lasiurus borealis), and tri-colored (Perimyotis subflavus) bats being the most common. Acoustical bat call surveys are being used to establish baseline inventories of bat species at each management location. In 2019, we used Pettersson and SM4Bat acoustic recorders to determine bat species presence for two nights at each of the 13 sites located on two management units prior to their treatment. Acoustic data were analyzed using Kaleidoscope Pro. We estimated the understory, midstory, and overstory cover and tree basal area at each site. Of the four land cover types present, plantations had the highest bat diversity with five species. Hardwood forests and xerohydric forests each had four bat species. No bat species were present at the single reforested site. The mean number of identifiable bat calls in each forest type over two nights was low with much variation among sites. There was no significant correlation between bat species diversity and vegetative cover, basal area, or distance to water for sites in any forest type. We anticipate bat species presence will increase over the next decade following implementation of the proposed management treatments.