Date Approved

2012

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Biology

Committee Member

Dr. Allen Kurta, Committee Chair

Committee Member

Dr. Daniel Clemans, Committee Member

Committee Member

Dr. Cara Shillington, Committee Member

Abstract

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).

Included in

Biology Commons

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