Study

Species-specific barrier effects of a motorway on the habitat use of two threatened forest-living bat species

  • Published source details Kerth G. & Melber M. (2009) Species-specific barrier effects of a motorway on the habitat use of two threatened forest-living bat species. Biological Conservation, 142, 270-279.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Install underpasses or culverts as road/railway crossing structures for bats

Action Link
Bat Conservation
  1. Install underpasses or culverts as road/railway crossing structures for bats

    A study in 2004–2007 of an underpass below a motorway in a forested area of northern Bavaria, Germany (Kerth & Melber 2009) found that a cluttered habitat bat species rarely crossed the motorway and only crossed through the underpass, whereas an open habitat bat species crossed the motorway frequently and flew over the road more often than through the underpass. Only three of 34 radio-tracked Bechstein’s bats Myotis bechsteinii crossed the motorway, all using the underpass (36 crossings). Five of six radio-tracked barbastelle bats Barbastella barbastellus crossed the motorway but flew over the road (21 crossings at six different sites) more often than through the underpass (16 crossings). The motorway had four to five lanes carrying an average of 84,000 vehicles/day. The underpass (5 m wide x 4.5 m high x 30 m long) was located within a motorway section surrounded by forest. Mist netting was carried out for 153 nights at 12 sites within the forest in May–September 2004–2007. Each of 40 adult female bats was radio-tracked for at least three full consecutive nights.

    (Summarised by: Anna Berthinussen)

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