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Roosting habits of four bat species in the Black Hills of South Dakota

January 1, 2001

The availability of suitable roosts influences the distribution and abundance of bats. Quantifying roosting requirements is a necessary step toward effectively monitoring, managing, and conserving bats. Our objectives were to locate and characterize the natural, daytime summer roosts of Myotis septentrionalis, M. thysanodes, M. volans, and Eptesicus fuscus in the Black Hills of South Dakota, USA and compare local roosts to those used in other regions. Bats were marked with radio transmitters and followed to roosts. We successfully tracked 37 bats of four species to a total of 81 roosts. Myotis septentrionalis and E. fuscus consistently used trees, while M. thysanodes and M. volans used both trees and rock crevices. Roost trees were consistently among the largest available and were found in areas of relatively high snag densities. Maintaining forests with high snag densities and large trees will likely benefit bat populations in the Black Hills. All species switched roosts, but generally remained within small (≈4 km2) areas. Lactating M. thysanodes changed roosts together while carrying young. Fidelity to roosts and roost areas was demonstrated by bats in the Black Hills.

Publication Year 2001
Title Roosting habits of four bat species in the Black Hills of South Dakota
Authors P.M. Cryan, M.A. Bogan, G.M. Yanega
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Acta Chiropterologica
Index ID 1015149
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Fort Collins Science Center