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The following schedule is subject to change (as of October 11, 2016). Please check back for updates. For more information about this meeting, go to: www.seafwa.org/conferences/2016
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Wednesday, October 19 • 10:40am - 11:00am
Wildlife. Use of Highway Culverts and Box Bridges by Winter-Roosting Bats in Mississippi

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AUTHORS: J. B. Katzenmeyer, USDA, Wildlife Services; *K. Shelton, Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks; J. C. Jones and B. N. Hodges, Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Mississippi State University; D. Richardson, and B. Rosamand, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT: Bat numbers have declined in the United States where outbreaks of White-nose Syndrome (Pseudogymnoascus destructans) have occurred. Bats have been reported utilizing highway underpasses as winter hibernacula throughout the United States. We recorded bat species and numbers of roosting bats in culverts (N=214) in 27 counties of Mississippi during winters of 2010 – 2015. In 2015, we collected microclimate, geospatial, and dimensional data on a subset of the 214 study culverts (N=39) to investigate relationships between bat numbers and explanatory habitat variables. We detected roosting bats in 52% of 214 surveyed culverts with 5 species being detected over the 5 year period. Numbers of bats per culvert per survey event ranged from 0 to 927 during this period. Numbers of roosting bats in culverts exhibited moderate, inverse relationships to outside, ambient air temperatures and internal ambient air temperatures at culvert mid-points (r < -0.14, P < 0.02). Winter temperatures inside culverts were conducive to establishment of WNS fungus. A moderate, positive relationship was detected between numbers of roosting bats and culvert length (r = 0.56, P < 0.01). A moderate inverse relationship was detected between numbers of roosting bats in culverts and distance (km) to public forest lands (r = -0.44, P < 0.03). This study can help biologists with prioritization of protection and monitoring of culverts, impact assessment of culvert replacement to roosting bats, and understanding the potential for WNS incidence in these roost sites.

Wednesday October 19, 2016 10:40am - 11:00am
Louisiana Room

Attendees (3)