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Wetlands

, Volume 39, Issue 4, pp 717–727 | Cite as

Rapid Increases in Bat Activity and Diversity after Wetland Construction in an Urban Ecosystem

  • Kevin A. ParkerJr
  • Brian T. Springall
  • Reuben A. Garshong
  • Ashley N. Malachi
  • Lauren E. Dorn
  • Alicia Costa-Terryll
  • Rachael A. Mathis
  • Alayna N. Lewis
  • Cassandra L. MacCheyne
  • Tronjay T. Davis
  • Alexis D. Rice
  • Nyla Y. Varh
  • Han Li
  • Malcolm D. Schug
  • Matina C. Kalcounis-RueppellEmail author
Constructed Wetlands

Abstract

Wetland construction can mitigate the biodiversity and water quality losses associated with reduced natural wetland coverage. While beneficial effects of wetland construction for bats have been observed in natural and rural settings, the effects of wetland construction on bats in an urban ecosystem are less understood. We used passive acoustic monitoring to measure bat activity levels and diversity at two constructed wetlands and two control sites on the University of North Carolina Greensboro campus, in Greensboro, North Carolina, USA. We monitored all 4 sites before and after wetland construction. Pre-wetland construction, there were few differences in bat activity and community structure at our sites. After wetland construction, we observed greater activity, attributable to all species we recorded, at wetland sites compared to control sites. Species diversity and species richness were also higher at wetland sites compared to control sites. When comparing the same sites before and after wetland construction, both bat activity and species richness increased after construction, but the effects were seen in Winter and not Spring. Our results demonstrate that bats use constructed wetlands in urban ecosystems similarly to other habitat settings. Increases in bat activity, diversity, and species richness occurred within one year of wetland construction.

Keywords

Chiroptera Conservation Management Fresh water Piedmont Bioindicators Eptesicus fuscus Winter Spring 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The UNCG Wetlands Project is funded by grants from the Duke Energy Water Resources Fund, the University of North Carolina Greensboro Green Fund, and the University of North Carolina Greensboro Provost Office. We would like to thank the following groups/individuals for making the Wetland installation and research possible: Radmila Petric, Aaron Wagoner, Angela Larsen, Kristina Morales, Lynn Sametz, Parke Rublee; City of Greensboro; Greensboro Science Center; University of North Carolina Greensboro (UNCG) Bat and Mouse Lab; UNCG Biology, Chemistry, and Geography Departments; UNCG Peabody Park Preservation Committee; UNCG Office of Sustainability; UNCG Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Creativity Office; UNCG Facilities Design and Construction; UNCG Facilities Grounds and Garage; and the community of volunteers who helped with the construction of the UNCG Wetlands. This paper was written as part of a co-curricular course associated with an NIH training grant to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (NIGMS NIH T34GM113860). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

Supplementary material

13157_2018_1115_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (66 mb)
ESM 1 (PDF 67548 kb)
13157_2018_1115_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (43 kb)
ESM 2 (PDF 43 kb)

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Copyright information

© Society of Wetland Scientists 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin A. ParkerJr
    • 1
  • Brian T. Springall
    • 1
  • Reuben A. Garshong
    • 1
  • Ashley N. Malachi
    • 1
  • Lauren E. Dorn
    • 2
  • Alicia Costa-Terryll
    • 1
  • Rachael A. Mathis
    • 1
  • Alayna N. Lewis
    • 1
  • Cassandra L. MacCheyne
    • 1
  • Tronjay T. Davis
    • 1
  • Alexis D. Rice
    • 2
  • Nyla Y. Varh
    • 1
  • Han Li
    • 1
  • Malcolm D. Schug
    • 1
  • Matina C. Kalcounis-Rueppell
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Biology DepartmentUniversity of North Carolina GreensboroGreensboroUSA
  2. 2.Kinesiology DepartmentUniversity of North Carolina GreensboroGreensboroUSA

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