Testing traditional assumptions about regional migration in bats

Jennifer J Krauel, Liam McGuire, Justin G Boyles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Most migratory bats are considered regional migrants, thought to move relatively shortdistances (< 100 km) between hibernacula and maternity sites. However, our understanding of these movements has largely been limited to banding studies or detailed tracking of small numbers of bats by aircraft. Inferring population-wide behavior from small samples is difficult and can introduce bias. For example, there are clearly cases where regional migrants can travel > 500 km, but these may better be considered as outliers. We tracked movement of 108 Indiana bats (Myotis sodalis) across the Midwestern US in 2015 using a regional network of radiotelemetry receivers to test traditional assumptions about regional migrants: 1) bats move away from hibernacula in spring in all directions with known maternity roosts, e.g. in a star-like pattern, 2) bats follow linear landscape features, 3) long-distance movements are rare, and 4) bats do not significantly extend autumn migration distance by movements am
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-123
JournalMammal Research
StatePublished - Nov 20 2017


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