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US Fish & Wildlife Service FieldNotes

Bat Survey Completed at Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge

Region 3, November 8, 2013
Hoary Bat captured at Shiawassee NWR.
Hoary Bat captured at Shiawassee NWR. - Photo Credit: n/a
Big Brown Bat was the most abundant species found on the refuge's survey.
Big Brown Bat was the most abundant species found on the refuge's survey. - Photo Credit: n/a

Two new species of bat were found on the refuge earlier this year - the Hoary Bat (pictured) and Red Bat. These were found during an exploratory survey to see what types of bats occur on the refuge and how abundant they are. This survey was conducted in collaboration with Eastern Michigan University.

A total of 229 bats of three species were captured, including 222 Big Brown Bats, 4 Red Bats, and 3 Hoary Bats. Unfortunately, only 2 Little Brown Bats were encountered. This species used to be the most abundant bat on the refuge. However, White Nose Syndrome (a bat killing fungus) has decimated this species across most of its range.

Similarly, no Northern Long-eared Bats were found. This species has not been recorded at the refuge before, although we have the right habitat. Its population has been drastically reduced by White Nose Syndrome as well. In fact, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to list this species as endangered.

Contact Info: Steve Kahl, 989-777-5930, steve_kahl@fws.gov