U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists at Fort Collins Science Center, National Wetlands Research Center, Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center, and Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, as well as USFWS Migratory Bird biologists across the country, are collaborating with university partners to develop a suite of products for managers. The goals are to identify migratory pathways and stopover sites for conservation, mitigation, and landscape planning; convey the importance of functional landscapes and unobstructed airspaces for migrating wildlife; enable use of radar by the wider biological, wind power, and related communities; and simplify the analysis of radar data. The long term focus is to use radar technologies to better understand movement patterns and habitat associations of migratory birds and other wildlife. Land managers and industry may use the knowledge and tools developed to optimize the siting of energy projects, other facilities, and migratory bird habitat projects.
Using radar to advance migratory bird management: an interagency collaboration
Sojda, R., J.M. Ruth, W.C. Barrow, D.K. Dawson, R.H. Diehl, A. Manville, M.T. Green, D.J. Krueper, and S. Johnston
Migratory birds face many changes to the landscapes they traverse and the habitats they use. Wind turbines and communications towers, which pose hazards to birds and bats in flight, are being erected across the United States and offshore. Human activities can also destroy or threaten habitats critical to birds during migratory passage, and climate change appears to be altering migratory patterns. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and other agencies are under increasing pressure to identify and evaluate movement patterns and habitats used during migration and other timesâ¦
A plan for the North American Bat Monitoring Program (NABat)
Loeb, S.C., T.J. Rodhouse, L.E. Ellison, C.L. Lausen, J.D. Reichard, K.M. Irvine, T.E. Ingersoll, J.T.H. Coleman, W.E. Thogmartin, J.R. Sauer, C.M. Francis, M.L. Bayless, T.R. Stanley, and D.H. Johnson
Parent Publication Title:
U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Southern Research Station
The purpose of the North American Bat Monitoring Program (NABat) is to create a continent-wide program to monitor bats at local to rangewide scales that will provide reliable data to promote effective conservation decisionmaking and the long-term viability of bat populations across the continent. This is an international, multiagency program. Four approaches will be used to gather monitoring data to assess changes in bat distributions and abundances: winter hibernaculum counts, maternity colony counts, mobile acoustic surveys along road transects, and acoustic surveys at stationary points. These monitoring approaches are described along with methods for identifying species recorded by acoustic detectors. Other chapters describe the sampling design, the database management system (Bat Population Database), and statistical approaches that can be used to analyze data collected through this program.
Progress Report: The North American Bat Monitoring Program (NABat)
Ellison, L.E., S.C. Loeb, T.J. Rodhouse, C.L. Lausen, T. Ingersoll, J. Reichard, K.M. Irvine, W.E. Thogmartin, J.T.H. Coleman, J.R. Sauer, R. Dixon, K. Castle, M. Bayless, K. Gillies, and A. McIntire
Parent Publication Title:
44th Annual North American Society for Bat Research Symposium, October 22-25, 2014, Albany, New York
Background: The physiological effects of white-nose syndrome (WNS) in hibernating bats and ultimate causes of mortality from infection with Pseudogymnoascus (formerly Geomyces) destructans are not fully understood. Increased frequency of arousal from torpor described among hibernating bats with late-stage WNS is thought to accelerate depletion of fat reserves, but the physiological mechanisms that lead to these alterations in hibernation behavior have not been elucidated. We used the doubly labeled water (DLW) method and clinical chemistry to evaluate energy use, body composition changes, and blood chemistry perturbations in hibernating little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) experimentally infected with P. destructans to better understand the physiological processes that underlie mortality from WNS.
Results: These data indicated that fat energy utilization, as demonstrated by changes in body composition, was two-fold higher for bats with WNS compared to negative controls. These differences were apparent in early stages of infection when torpor-arousal patterns were equivalent between infected and non-infected animals, suggesting that P. destructans has complex physiological impacts on its host prior to onset of clinical signs indicative of late-stage infections. Additionally, bats with mild to moderate skin lesions associated with early-stage WNS demonstrated a chronic respiratory acidosis characterized by significantly elevated dissolved carbon dioxide, acidemia, and elevated bicarbonate. Potassium concentrations were also significantly higher among infected bats, but sodium, chloride, and other hydration parameters were equivalent to controls.
Conclusions: Integrating these novel findings on the physiological changes that occur in early-stage WNS with those previously documented in late-stage infections, we propose a multi-stage disease progression model that mechanistically describes the pathologic and physiologic effects underlying mortality of WNS in hibernating bats. This model identifies testable hypotheses for better understanding this disease, knowledge that will be critical for defining effective disease mitigation strategies aimed at reducing morbidity and mortality that results from WNS.
Pathophysiology of white-nose syndrome in bats: a mechanistic model linking wing damage to mortality
Warnecke, L., J.M. Turner, T.K. Bollinger, V. Misra, P.M. Cryan, D.S. Blehert, G. Wibbelt and C.K.R. Willis
White-nose syndrome is devastating North American bat populations but we lack basic information on disease mechanisms. Altered blood physiology owing to epidermal invasion by the fungal pathogen Geomyces destructans (Gd) has been hypothesized as a cause of disrupted torpor patterns of affected hibernating bats, leading to mortality. Here, we present data on blood electrolyte concentration, haematology and acid–base balance of hibernating little brown bats, Myotis lucifugus, following experimental inoculation with Gd. Compared with controls, infected bats showed electrolyte depletion (i.e. lower plasma sodium), changes in haematology (i.e. increased haematocrit and decreased glucose) and disrupted acid–base balance (i.e. lower CO2 partial pressure and bicarbonate). These findings indicate hypotonic dehydration, hypovolaemia and metabolic acidosis. We propose a mechanistic model linking tissue damage to altered homeostasis and morbidity/mortality.
Bats, mines, and citizen science in the Rockies: volunteers make a difference in Colorado