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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Bat communities respond positively to large-scale thinning of forest regrowth

Published source details

Blakey R.V., Law B.S., Kingsford R.T., Stoklosa J., Tap P. & Williamson K. (2016) Bat communities respond positively to large-scale thinning of forest regrowth. Journal of Applied Ecology, 53, 1694-1703

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

Thin trees within forest and woodland Bat Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 2012–2013 at 24 eucalypt forest sites in southeastern Australia (Blakey et al. 2016) found that thinned forests had greater overall bat activity than forests with unthinned regrowth, but bat activity was similar between thinned and natural forests, and 10 of 11 bat species were recorded in all forest types. Overall bat activity was lowest in unthinned regrowth (average 140 bat passes/night) and similar in forest thinned 0–4 years previously (318 bat passes/night), forest thinned 5–10 years previously (344 passes/night) and natural forest (350 bat passes/night). The same 10 bat species were recorded in all four types of forest, except for the chocolate wattled bat Chalinolobus morio, which was not recorded in forests with unthinned regrowth (see original paper for data for individual species). Six sites were surveyed for each of four thinning categories: unthinned regrowth (even-aged, average 1,253 stems/ha), thinned 0–4 years previously (even-aged, average 280 stems/ha), thinned 5–10 years previously (patchy structure, average 419 stems/ha), natural forest (mature, open forest with mixed-age, large trees, average 295 stems/ha). Bat activity was recorded with bat detectors at two locations/site for 2–6 full nights between December 2012 and January 2013.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)