Continue Acoustic Monitoring at Six Northern Great Plains Parks and Develop Outreach and Education Materials
PI: Dan Licht, Kara Paintner-Green
The network used the funds to cover travel, equipment, and other costs associated with conducting acoustic monitoring for bats at six Northern Great Plains parks (Agate Fossil Beds NM, Fort Laramie NHS, Fort Union Trading Post NHS, Knife River Indian Villages NHS, Mount Rushmore NMEM, and Scotts Bluff NM). The project was leveraged with equipment and other resources purchased in prior years with white-nose syndrome (WNS) funds. The work was conducted by the Midwest Region (MWR) Wildlife Biologist.
Bat recorders were deployed for about a week at each park in June-August. Most of the sites were re-visits from the summer of 2015. The number of deployment sites per park ranged from 4-15. Additional intensive monitoring occurred at Agate Fossil Beds NM as part of an experimental study of habitat use at the prairie park. Additional monitoring also occurred at Fort Laramie NHS around historic buildings and a bat house.
Funds were used to produce a brochure about bat monitoring at Wind Cave NP, based on field work in 2014-15. Funds were also used for travel to Fort Laramie NHS for the MWR Regional Wildlife Biologist to give an evening presentation on bats to the public. (A presentation was also given at Agate Fossil Beds NM; however, project funds were not needed for that.)
The data collected from this effort will be used along with data collected 2014-15 from the parks listed above and other parks in the Northern Great Plains Network to assess changes in bat populations over time, relative habitat use, and other management needs. A 3-year report should be completed in the fall/winter of 2016. Additional reports are anticipated, such as a report on bat use of habitat in a prairie park. Funding was given to the University of Wyoming (UWY) under the agreement for Jewel Cave National Monument to have the UWY staff write a bat evening program and directions for using the Wildlife Acoustic Echo Meter Touch for use by National Park Service interpreters at Jewel Cave and other Northern Great Plains parks.