Activity of insectivorous bats is related to water availability in a highly modified Mexican temperate forest
This study is summarised as evidence for the following.
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Create artificial water sources
A replicated, site comparison study in 2005–2006 of six cattle ponds in a pine-oak forest reserve in Mexico (López-González et al 2016) found that three of six ponds had higher bat activity than surrounding habitats during the dry season, but activity was similar over ponds and surrounding forest and meadows in the rainy season. At three sites, bat activity was significantly higher over ponds than along transects up to 500 m away during the dry season (data reported as statistical model results). However, during the rainy season, bat activity was similar over ponds and along transects. One other site had similar bat activity at ponds and transects in both dry and rainy seasons. Two other sites had variable or little bat activity with no obvious pattern. Nine bat species were recorded (see original reference for data for individual species). The ponds were constructed to provide water for cattle. They were naturally recharged during the rainy season and varied in size (dry season: 0–12,450 m2; rainy season: 600–19,790 m2). Bat detectors recorded bat activity for three hours from sunset during two consecutive nights at each pond and along transects up to 500 m perpendicular to the ponds. Surveys were repeated in the dry spring and rainy summer seasons in 2005 and 2006.