MEGA Murray-Darling Microbat Project
What the project is about
Scientists from the South Australian Museum have recently been awarded a citizen science grant, funded by the Australian Government under the Inspiring Australia – Science Engagement Programme, that will allow them to partner with the community and collect information on the lives of the microbats of the South Australian Murray-Darling region.
To uncover the secrets of these 'mega important critters', the bat scientists will be running the 'MEGA Murray-Darling Microbat Project.'
Scientists will work with the South Australian Murray-Darling Basin Natural Resources Management Board, the University of South Australia and local Landcare associations, to teach people how to survey for bats using the latest technology.
We hope to have as many people as possible involved across the region over the next two summers to gather much needed information on microbat distribution, diversity, habitat needs, management practices and conservation status.
Who can participate
Residents of the Murray-Darling region of South Australia now have the opportunity to participate in this new citizen science project.
What are microbats
These are the mouse-sized, mostly insectivorous bats, and not the large fruit eating bats that have taken up residence in Botanic Park. Very little is known about the 16 microbat species that occur in the region.
Each species has an individual call pattern when it uses echolocation to catch prey.
How can I get involved
To get involved in this project contact your local Landcare or LAP Project Officer or Sylvia Clarke in our Natural Resources Centre, Mount Barker.
All that is needed is for you to:
- fill in a ten minute survey with questions about your knowledge and views on microbats and your property
- borrow an AnaBat from your local Natural Resource Centre or Landcare Office
- set the AnaBat up to record over night at your site of interest and record a few details/photos on the type of habitat available at the site (using the App or a datasheet).
We can then let you know what bats were recorded and what the data from across the region is telling us.
What do I need to get started
'AnaBat Swifts' are ultrasonic bat detectors and are available for loan from Natural Resource Centres and Landcare or LAP Offices around the region, they record the calls of bats flying past during the night.
To submit data visit the BioCollect project page.
You will need to set up an Atlas of Living Australia log in on the first page if you don’t already have one.