Habitat preferences of bats in a rural area of Sicily determined by acoustic surveys

Maurizio Sara', Danilo Russo, Ivy Di Salvo

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24 Citazioni (Scopus)


The bat fauna of a 60 km2 wide area representing the typical rural landscape of inland Sicily and including the small "Rocche di Entella" karstic plateau (Natural Reserve and SAC) was surveyed between May 2006 and September 2007. Sampling was carried out at 95 sites, distributed proportionally in six main habitats. Bat calls were timeexpanded with a D980 bat detector and then identified to species level by a Discriminant Function Analysis. We recorded 305 bat passes and identified 96.4% of recorded calls. Moon phase, cloud cover and their interaction did not affect total bat activity, nor did the sampling period. Aquatic and riparian habitats were preferred, whilst Eucalyptus plantations and vineyards were avoided. At species level, all bats selected the former habitats, except H. savii, and avoided field crops, except Myotis sp. Thermo-Mediterranean shrub formations showed the highest species richness, whereas vineyards had the lowest. Our study emphasizes the value of riparian habitats and low-intensity farming for bat conservation.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)137-146
Numero di pagine10
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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