Northern long-eared bat monitoring

Project





Principal Investigator:

Julie Blanchong

Collaborators:

Kelly Poole, Iowa Department of Natural Resources

Duration:

April 2016 to May 2018

Funding Source(s):

Iowa Department of Natural Resources (IDNR)

Goals and Objectives:


Conduct acoustic monitoring studies to evaluate migratory movements and habitat use of the northern long-eared bat (NLEB) in Iowa.


 


Progress:


This is an acoustic monitoring project to evaluate migratory movements and habitat use of the northern long-eared bat (NLEB) in Iowa. This species was recently listed as “Threatened” under the Endangered Species Act. The results of this work will be used by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the US Fish and Wildlife Service to support Mid-American Energy’s development of a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) for wind power facilities in Iowa.  In summer 2016, bat echolocation activity was recorded for 2 nights at 120 sites identified as likely to contain habitat for NLEB in 60 counties in central and western Iowa during June and July. Additionally, several putative hibernacula were monitored for bat activity in both fall 2016 and spring 2017. Echolocation data were analyzed to identify presence or probable absence of NLEB as well as little brown bats at each site using USFWS approved bat call identification software.


 


Future Plans:


This project will be repeated in the summer of 2017 and focus on both NLEB and little brown bats. A proportion of the 120 sites will be resurveyed and some new sites will be added to overlap with projected wind energy development in Iowa in the future. Additionally, putative hibernacula will be monitored in fall and spring. Echolocation data will again be analyzed to identify presence or probable absence of NLEB and little brown bats at each site using USFWS approved bat call identification software.

Duration: 
04/22/2016 to 05/31/2018