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Hello. Welcome to the 'Bats And Transportation Infrastructure' site; an online resource for transportation authorities, chiroptologists and environmental consultants.

Forty-seven microchiropteran species of 20 genera and three families populate the United States. Of those species, 61.7 percent (29) and potentially 87.2 percent (41) exploit manmade transportation infrastructure (i.e., > 6 m bridges, box culverts, drainage structures).

Use Infrastructure
  Antrozous pallidus, pallid bat
  Artibeus jamaicensis, Jamaican fruit-eating bat
  Choeronycteris mexicana, Mexican long-tongued bat
  Corynorhinus rafinesquii, Rafinesque’s big-eared bat
  Corynorhinus townsendii, Townsend’s big-eared bat
  Eptesicus fuscus, big brown bat
  Lasionycteris noctivagans, silver-haired bat
  Lasiurus cinereus, hoary bat
  Leptonycteris yerbabuenae, lesser long-nosed bat
  Macrotus californicus, California leaf-nosed bat
  Myotis austroriparius, southeastern myotis
  Myotis californicus, California myotis
  Myotis ciliolabrum, western small-footed myotis
  Myotis evotis, long-eared myotis
  Myotis grisescens, gray myotis
  Myotis leibii, eastern small-footed myotis
  Myotis lucifugus, little brown myotis
  Myotis occultus, Arizona myotis
  Myotis septentrionalis, northern myotis
  Myotis sodalis, Indiana myotis
  Myotis thysanodes, fringed myotis
  Myotis velifer, cave myotis
  Myotis volans, long-legged myotis
  Myotis yumanensis, Yuma myotis
  Nycticeius humeralis, evening bat
  Nyctinomops macrotis, big free-tailed bat
  Parastrellus hesperus; canyon bat, western pipistrelle
  Perimyotis subflavus, tri-colored bat
  Tadarida brasiliensis, Mexican free-tailed bat

denotes species susceptible to white-nose syndrome
Probably Use Infrastructure
  Euderma maculatum, spotted bat
  Eumops floridanus, Florida bonneted bat
  Eumops perotis, greater bonneted bat
  Eumops underwoodii, Underwood’s bonneted bat
  Idionycteris phyllotis, Allen’s big-eared bat
  Leptonycteris nivalis, Mexican long-nosed bat
  Molossus molossus, Pallas’ mastiff bat
  Mormoops megalophylla, Peter’s ghost-faced bat
  Myotis auriculus, southwestern myotis
  Myotis keenii, Keen’s myotis
  Myotis melanorhinus, dark-nosed small-footed myotis
  Nyctinomops femorosaccus, pocketed free-tailed bat

Globally, bats are intrinsic to healthy ecosystems, community integrity and vital ecological processes. They provide valuable ecosystem services, products and provisions, cultural benefits and contribute considerably to mammalian diversity. Notwithstanding, bats confront multiple threats; habitat destruction and modification, climate change, pesticides and pollution, disease and human development cumulatively contribute to population level impacts. Additionally, roost availability and abundance are critical elements limiting chiropteran populations. As the availability and abundance of natural roosts decline, manmade infrastructure (e.g., mines, buildings, bridges, culverts) become incalculable substitutes.

Driving Conservation

Our objective was to produce comprehensive but practicable guidelines to harmonize transportation requirements with environmentally sustainable management practices – a framework by which transportation authorities can orchestrate bat mitigation, management and conservation initiatives.

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Transportation authorities are increasingly incorporating environmental compliance, sustainability and stewardship within transportation planning, project development, construction, maintenance and operations. Furthermore, the exigency for environmental stewardship practices, procedures and policies echoes public concern for environmental integrity, habitat connectivity and biological conservation. Today, transportation authorities’ mission espouses the larger societal objective of environmental excellence and sustainable transportation.

Operational activities that adversely affect bats primarily include roost destruction, modification of habitats and direct disturbance during critical life phases (i.e., maternity and weaning periods, hibernation). Even those projects with uncomplicated scopes (e.g., pavement rehabilitation and reconstruction, bridge deck replacement, guardrail and fencing installation, timber treatment) and minimal environmental impacts may cause disturbance to resident colonies.

The publication ‘Bats in American Bridges,’ by Keeley and Tuttle, remains the authoritative work for bats and transportation structures. Although this document provides an incredible wealth of information, people inaccurately consider their “ideal” characteristics as categorical requirements. This can precipitate misconceptions and erroneously influence surveyors or consultants and therefore, cause oversights with respect to bat occupancy. Bats exhibit considerable plasticity, both within and between species. Therefore, implementing a “one size fits all” approach to 29, and potentially 41, different bat species may effect devastating consequences.

In the interactive gallery, hover over icons like these to view microlocations that would typically be overlooked.
In the interactive gallery, hover over icons like these to view microlocations that would typically be overlooked.

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Questions, comments, shareable case studies, photographs… we would love to hear from you.

Telephone anytime (505) 818 7396

Text anytime (505) 818 7396

Use the handy form or email us @ contact@rdwildlife.com