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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Do young eucalypt plantations benefit bats in an intensive agricultural landscape?

Published source details

Law B.S., Chidel M. & Penman T. (2011) Do young eucalypt plantations benefit bats in an intensive agricultural landscape? Wildlife Research, 38, 173-187


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Create tree plantations on agricultural land to provide roosting and foraging habitat for bats Bat Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 2006–2007 at 14 farms in New South Wales, Australia (Law et al 2011) found that tree plantations on agricultural land had similar bat activity and species richness as treeless paddocks, and lower bat activity, species richness and numbers of roosts than remnant native woodlands. Bat activity and the number of bat species recorded was similar between plantations (87 bat passes/night, 6–8 species) and paddocks (40 passes/night, 7 species), but higher in remnant woodland (650 bat passes/night, 10 species), although no statistical tests were carried out. Species composition was also similar in plantations and paddocks but differed in remnant woodland (data reported as results of statistical models). Twenty-eight bat roosts were identified in remnant trees, but none in plantations. Twelve bat species were recorded in total (see original reference for data for individual species). Forty-four sites were surveyed across 14 farms (11 in remnant woodland, 27 in plantations, six in treeless paddocks). Plantations (2–40 ha) consisted of 1–4 Eucalyptus spp. and were 4–5 or 10 years old. Each of 44 sites was surveyed for two consecutive nights/site in September 2006 and February 2007. Ten bats were caught in harp traps and radiotracked in late summer and spring 2008 at three farms.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)

Retain remnant forest or woodland on agricultural land Bat Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 2006–2007 at 14 farms in Tasmania (Law et al 2011) found that remnant native woodlands had higher bat activity, more bat species and more bat roosts than plantations and treeless paddocks, and species composition also differed. Bat activity and the number of bat species recorded was higher in remnant woodland (650 bat passes/night, 10 species) than in plantations (87 bat passes/night, 6–8 species) and paddocks (40 passes/night, 7 species), although no statistical tests were carried out. Twenty-eight bat roosts were identified in remnant trees, but none in plantations. Species composition differed in remnant woodland compared to plantations and paddocks (data reported as results of statistical models). Twelve bat species were recorded in total (see original reference for data for individual species). Forty-four sites were surveyed across 14 farms (11 in remnant woodland, 27 in plantations, six in treeless paddocks). Plantations (2–40 ha) consisted of 1–4 Eucalyptus spp. and were 4–5 or 10 years old. Each of 44 sites was surveyed for two consecutive nights/site in September 2006 and February 2007. Ten bats were caught in harp traps and radiotracked in late summer and spring 2008 at three farms.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)