Date of Award
Open Access Thesis
Master of Science (MS)
Dr. Allen Kurta, Committee Chair
Dr. Daniel Clemans, Committee Member
Dr. Cara Shillington, Committee Member
I studied activity and diet of bats in apple orchards in southern Michigan. There was no difference between organic and conventional orchards in number and composition of insects captured with light traps, number of bats captured with mist nets, or number of acoustic files of bat activity that were recorded. The majority of insects captured were Coleptera, Diptera, Hemiptera, Lepidoptera, and Trichoptera. Only two species of bats were caught: big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) and eastern red bats (Lasiurus borealis). Most calls were produced by big brown bats, followed by hoary bats (L. cinereus), red bats, and Myotis. Coleoptera dominated the diet of big brown bats caught in orchards, followed by Diptera, Lepidoptera, Hemiptera, and Hymenoptera. Analysis of the DNA of insects in feces indicated that big brown bats consumed several species that are economically important, including mosquitoes (Aedes), spotted cucumber beetles (Diabrotica undecimpunctata), and pavement ants (Tetramorium caespitum).
Smith, Brenna Lynn, "Activity and Diet of Bats in Apple Orchards of Southern Michigan" (2012). Master's Theses and Doctoral Dissertations. Paper 386.