Bat box check at Wilson Reserve, 19 March 2016

1234567891011Written by: Robert Bender

We had a fine day and a good-sized team. I started at the west end, supported by Helen and Joanna Mery, a student from Paris doing a 4-month ecology internship here. A group of 8 Gould’s in box 2.




Steve had Stanley, Rebecca, Melissa, Angela and Evie. Melisa had a harness so got to climb and empty boxes.




A skeleton in box 6, picked completely clean by ants.




Its wrist band was still in place – a juvenile female from last spring. New box 26 is now used regularly:




Stanley had left two bags of Burke Rd bats in my garage, plus we collected another 35 Wilson Reserve bats. So we set to work on processing, Steve doing genetic sampling, assisted by Helen




Jessica worked with Joanna, Evie with Sue Bendel, Melissa with Rebecca.




Joanna had little experience with bats, but is keen to learn, and scribed for Jessica.




Evie, like many others, found her tongue assisted with making judgements about juvenile vs adult status. She has just heard that she won a postgrad scholarship.




Joanna made the most of her opportunity to be close to little bats, taking many photos.



We finished up around 6:30 and everyone went off home – Helen with Stanley to release the Burke Rd. bats. Joanna is being hosted by some neighbours of mine and brought them along at 8:15 to help release the bags of bats, so I got a couple of good photos of bats flying off. Releasing is always a joyous experience.



The bats were all eager to fly off to forage for insects and it was soon over. Janet and Rod did their bit.

Box Bats Species Adult
B19 11 Gould’s 1 10
B13 10 Gould’s 7 3
B02 8 Gould’s 3 5
B26 3 Gould’s 1 2
B03 1 Gould’s 1
B06 1 Gould’s 1
B12 1 Gould’s 1
  35 Total 13 22
Burke Rd tubes
T08 9 Gould’s 3 6
T07 1 Gould’s 1
  45 Total 16 29

About Pia Lentini

Pia Lentini is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the University of Melbourne's Quantitative and Applied Ecology group.
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