Forests and bats.
Fenton, Brock*,1, Bernard, Enrico2, Tuttle, Merlind2, 1 Department of Biology, London, Ontario, Canada2 Amazon Conservation Projects, Belem, Brazil
ABSTRACT- Forests can provide bats with places to roost and places to forage, but often bats roost in forests and forage elsewhere or vice versa. Bats that forage well above the canopy may not depend upon forest, and this could be true for species that hunt over water. In short, the lives of many bats are associated with, but not bound to forest habitats, and the same is likely to be true of the role of bats in the lives of forests. Biologists have used population data (e.g., from monitoring echolocation calls) or data on individuals (e.g., from radio-tracking) to assess howe bats use forests and other habitats. These two kinds of data are not always interchangeable, and inform us about different aspects of the dynamics of bats and forests. Flexibility in bat behavior, and variation in their roost requirements with, for example, reproductive condition, mean that relationships between bats and forests are dynamic. Therefore, data from one area for one species may not be applicable to the same species elsewhere. While some species of bats are confined to forest habitats, many others adjust their patterns of habitat use according to the distribution of roosts and foraging areas.
Key words: foraging, roosting, echolocation
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