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Roosting and foraging social structure of the endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis).

Silvis A, Kniowski AB, Gehrt SD, Ford WM - PLoS ONE (2014)

Bottom Line: We found the colony roosting network was highly centralized in both years and that roost and social networks differed significantly from random networks.In contrast, whole colony foraging area use was similar between years.Detailed knowledge of the relationships between social and spatial aspects of bat ecology could greatly increase conservation effectiveness by allowing more structured approaches to roost and habitat retention for tree-roosting, socially-aggregating bat species.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Social dynamics are an important but poorly understood aspect of bat ecology. Herein we use a combination of graph theoretic and spatial approaches to describe the roost and social network characteristics and foraging associations of an Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) maternity colony in an agricultural landscape in Ohio, USA. We tracked 46 bats to 50 roosts (423 total relocations) and collected 2,306 foraging locations for 40 bats during the summers of 2009 and 2010. We found the colony roosting network was highly centralized in both years and that roost and social networks differed significantly from random networks. Roost and social network structure also differed substantially between years. Social network structure appeared to be unrelated to segregation of roosts between age classes. For bats whose individual foraging ranges were calculated, many shared foraging space with at least one other bat. Compared across all possible bat dyads, 47% and 43% of the dyads showed more than expected overlap of foraging areas in 2009 and 2010 respectively. Colony roosting area differed between years, but the roosting area centroid shifted only 332 m. In contrast, whole colony foraging area use was similar between years. Random roost removal simulations suggest that Indiana bat colonies may be robust to loss of a limited number of roosts but may respond differently from year to year. Our study emphasizes the utility of graphic theoretic and spatial approaches for examining the sociality and roosting behavior of bats. Detailed knowledge of the relationships between social and spatial aspects of bat ecology could greatly increase conservation effectiveness by allowing more structured approaches to roost and habitat retention for tree-roosting, socially-aggregating bat species.

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Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) capture locations and landscape configuration in Pickaway County, Ohio, USA.
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pone-0096937-g001: Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) capture locations and landscape configuration in Pickaway County, Ohio, USA.

Mentions: We conducted our study along Big Darby Creek in Pickaway County, Ohio, USA (Figure 1). Pickaway County is characterized by flat to gently rolling terrain with elevations ranging from 190 to 330 m above sea level. The Scioto River bisects the county and numerous smaller streams are present throughout. Cultivated cropland was the dominant land use within the county comprising 74% of the land area [46]. Woodlands composed 9% of the land area and were generally limited to field edges, creek banks, and small, widely scattered woodlots. Extant woodlots and/or riparian forests were commonly composed of box elder (Acer negundo), silver maple (Acer saccharinum), sugar maple (Acer saccharum), shagbark hickory (Carya ovata), common hackberry (Celtis occidentalis), white ash (Fraxinus americana) and American elm (Ulmus americana). We chose our general study location based on previously known Indiana bat roost locations with specific site locations determined by outreach to private landowners.


Roosting and foraging social structure of the endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis).

Silvis A, Kniowski AB, Gehrt SD, Ford WM - PLoS ONE (2014)

Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) capture locations and landscape configuration in Pickaway County, Ohio, USA.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4016147&req=5

pone-0096937-g001: Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) capture locations and landscape configuration in Pickaway County, Ohio, USA.
Mentions: We conducted our study along Big Darby Creek in Pickaway County, Ohio, USA (Figure 1). Pickaway County is characterized by flat to gently rolling terrain with elevations ranging from 190 to 330 m above sea level. The Scioto River bisects the county and numerous smaller streams are present throughout. Cultivated cropland was the dominant land use within the county comprising 74% of the land area [46]. Woodlands composed 9% of the land area and were generally limited to field edges, creek banks, and small, widely scattered woodlots. Extant woodlots and/or riparian forests were commonly composed of box elder (Acer negundo), silver maple (Acer saccharinum), sugar maple (Acer saccharum), shagbark hickory (Carya ovata), common hackberry (Celtis occidentalis), white ash (Fraxinus americana) and American elm (Ulmus americana). We chose our general study location based on previously known Indiana bat roost locations with specific site locations determined by outreach to private landowners.

Bottom Line: We found the colony roosting network was highly centralized in both years and that roost and social networks differed significantly from random networks.In contrast, whole colony foraging area use was similar between years.Detailed knowledge of the relationships between social and spatial aspects of bat ecology could greatly increase conservation effectiveness by allowing more structured approaches to roost and habitat retention for tree-roosting, socially-aggregating bat species.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Social dynamics are an important but poorly understood aspect of bat ecology. Herein we use a combination of graph theoretic and spatial approaches to describe the roost and social network characteristics and foraging associations of an Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) maternity colony in an agricultural landscape in Ohio, USA. We tracked 46 bats to 50 roosts (423 total relocations) and collected 2,306 foraging locations for 40 bats during the summers of 2009 and 2010. We found the colony roosting network was highly centralized in both years and that roost and social networks differed significantly from random networks. Roost and social network structure also differed substantially between years. Social network structure appeared to be unrelated to segregation of roosts between age classes. For bats whose individual foraging ranges were calculated, many shared foraging space with at least one other bat. Compared across all possible bat dyads, 47% and 43% of the dyads showed more than expected overlap of foraging areas in 2009 and 2010 respectively. Colony roosting area differed between years, but the roosting area centroid shifted only 332 m. In contrast, whole colony foraging area use was similar between years. Random roost removal simulations suggest that Indiana bat colonies may be robust to loss of a limited number of roosts but may respond differently from year to year. Our study emphasizes the utility of graphic theoretic and spatial approaches for examining the sociality and roosting behavior of bats. Detailed knowledge of the relationships between social and spatial aspects of bat ecology could greatly increase conservation effectiveness by allowing more structured approaches to roost and habitat retention for tree-roosting, socially-aggregating bat species.

Show MeSH