Honors Program

Midway Honors

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Richard Carter

Thesis Professor Department

Biological Sciences

Thesis Reader(s)

Arceo Gomez


Determining the activity among species-specific bat populations within specific habitat selections can help contribute to the conservation of Appalachian bat species. This study examines the differences in species-specific bat activity patterns between three ponds of variable sizes and a southeast-facing open field with a wooded edge. Four Song Meter SM4BAT FS bioacoustics detectors were used on a 15-acre property in Fall Branch, TN, with a wildlife acoustics detector being placed at three ponds and one field. There were three stages of data collection for this study which all took place during 2023. The first stage was during the spring (March 18th – May 18th), the second stage was during the summer (June 21st – August 27th), and the third stage was during the fall (September 26th – October 26th). Acoustic recordings were analyzed through SonoBat to classify them to species level using a recording call quality threshold of ≥ 95%. An identification likelihood of ≥ 90% yielded 36,308 calls assigned to a particular species/genus. The acoustic detectors detected eight bat species and the Myotis genus throughout the study. Species identified include Rafinesque's big-eared bat (Corynorhinus rafinesquii), big brown bat (Eptesicus fuscus), hoary bat (Lasiurus cinereus), silver-haired bat (Lasionycteris noctivagans), eastern red bat (Lasiurus borealis), evening bat (Nycticeius humeralis), tricolored bat (Pipistrellus subflavus), Mexican free-tailed bat (Tadarida brasiliensis), and species within the Myotis genus. Two chi-square analyses were performed through R to determine if there were significant spatial and temporal species-specific activity patterns between the four sites. Both chi-square analyses resulted in a p-value < 2.2e-16 indicating significant differences in species-specific activity levels between the four sites throughout spring, summer, and fall. This data can help species-specific conservation efforts by understanding bat species’ activity levels at particular habitat selections throughout the fall, summer, and spring seasons.


East Tennessee State University

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Withheld

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


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