4 July 2016 Sex-specific foraging habits and roost characteristics of Nycticeius humeralis in north-central Arkansas
Daniel R. Istvanko, Thomas S. Risch, Virginie Rolland
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Sexual segregation is common in polygynous mammals, particularly in wild ungulates, but is less known in bats of North America. Yet, the declining bat populations caused by white-nose syndrome, wind energy facilities, and habitat loss throughout eastern North America require habitat management, which may be sex specific. We thus determined sex-specific roosting and foraging habits of evening bats (Nycticeius humeralis) in north-central Arkansas. During the summers of 2013 and 2014, we equipped 70 individuals with radiotransmitters to track their foraging movements and identify their roosts that we characterized with 3 tree-level and 7 plot-level variables. We found that evening bat males and females segregate spatially with females foraging over a larger area than males. Females' roosts were also higher in elevation. Although the roost itself had similar characteristics between sexes, its surrounding habitat was characterized by less canopy cover and a smaller basal area for females. Our results support sex-specific habits and sexual segregation in a forest-dwelling bat, which highlights the importance of sex-specific studies to inform management decisions that would benefit both sexes, including females for which parental investment is higher.

© 2016 American Society of Mammalogists, www.mammalogy.org
Daniel R. Istvanko, Thomas S. Risch, and Virginie Rolland "Sex-specific foraging habits and roost characteristics of Nycticeius humeralis in north-central Arkansas," Journal of Mammalogy 97(5), 1336-1344, (4 July 2016). https://doi.org/10.1093/jmammal/gyw102
Received: 15 November 2015; Accepted: 2 June 2016; Published: 4 July 2016
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