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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Population trends of cave-dwelling bats in the Eastern Iberian Peninsula and the effect of protecting their roosts

Published source details

Machado M.C., Monsalve M.A., Castello A., Almenar D., Alcocer A. & Monros J.S. (2017) Population trends of cave-dwelling bats in the Eastern Iberian Peninsula and the effect of protecting their roosts. Acta Chiropterologica, 19, 107-118


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

Install fencing around cave entrances to restrict public access Bat Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 1997–2014 of 34 caves in eastern Spain (Machado et al 2017) found that installing fencing or cave gates did not have a significant effect on the occupancy or population growth rates of nine bat species. Average occupancy rates were similar in caves with (11 of 20, 57% of caves occupied) and without (8 of 14, 60% of caves occupied) gates or fencing (separate results for cave gates and fencing not reported). Population growth rates also did not differ significantly between caves with or without fencing or gates (data reported as results of statistical models). Fourteen caves had fencing installed (2.5 m high gridded metal fences in a 20 m radius around the cave entrance), two caves had rigid panels installed (filling three-quarters of the cave entrance), two caves had iron bars installed (filling the entire cave entrance), and two caves had cave gates installed (with 2 x 1 m2 openings for bats). Fourteen caves did not have fencing or gates installed. Bats were counted annually using infrared video cameras and bat detectors at cave entrances between May and July in 1997–2014.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)

Install and maintain cave gates to restrict public access Bat Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 1997–2014 of 34 caves in eastern Spain (Machado et al 2017) found that installing cave gates or fencing did not affect the occupancy or population growth rates of nine bat species. Average occupancy rates were similar in caves with (11 of 20, 57% of caves occupied) and without (8 of 14, 60% of caves occupied) gates or fencing (separate results for cave gates and fencing not reported). Population growth rates also did not differ significantly between caves with or without gates or fencing (data reported as results of statistical models). Fourteen caves had fencing installed (2.5 m high gridded metal fences in a 20 m radius around the cave entrance), two caves had rigid panels installed (filling three-quarters of the cave entrance), two caves had iron bars installed (filling the entire cave entrance), and two caves had cave gates installed (with 2 x 1 m2 openings for bats). Fourteen caves did not have gates or fencing installed. Bats were counted annually using infrared video cameras and bat detectors at cave entrances between May and July in 1997–2014.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)