Microclimate preferences of the grey-headed flying fox (Pteropus poliocephalus) in the Sydney region

Stephanie Snoyman, Culum Brown*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The population size of the grey-headed flying fox (Pteropus poliocephalus) has decreased dramatically as a result of a variety of threatening processes. This species spends a great proportion of time in roosting large social aggregations in urban areas, causing conflict between wildlife and humans. Little is known about why these bats choose to roost in some locations in preference to others. Roost selection by cave-dwelling bats can be greatly influenced by microclimatic variables; however, far less is known about microclimate selection in tree-roosting species despite the direct management implications. This study aimed to determine the microclimate characteristics of P. poliocephalus camps. Temperature and humidity data were collected via data-loggers located both in six camps and the bushland immediately adjacent to the camps in the greater Sydney region. We found significant differences between the microclimate within the camps and the surrounding bushland. In general, areas within the camps had a greater variance in temperature and humidity than the alternative locations. We hypothesise that camps may be specifically located in areas with high microclimate variance to accommodate a range of individual preferences that vary depending on demography.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)376-383
Number of pages8
JournalAustralian Journal of Zoology
Volume58
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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