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Bat Research

Bats are the second most diverse group of mammals in the world. There are over 900 known species, eight of which are found in Wisconsin. Bats provide important ecosystem services like insect control and pollination. Unfortunately, White-nose Syndrome (WNS), a deadly fungal infection, is spreading through North America at an alarming rate killing hundreds of thousands of bats.  In collaboration with the Wisconsin DNR, the Urban Ecology Center is helping researchers determine baseline bat population dynamics using high-tech Anabat detectors that identify bats by recording their ultrasonic calls.  Two stationary detectors record from Riverside (year-round) and Washington (during spring and fall migration) Parks.  A third mobile detector is used by volunteers on bat walks.  A GPS unit allows us to plot their walks, as well as the time and location in which bats are encountered.

If you are interested in helping the Urban Ecology Center bat research, please attend a volunteer workshop or contact Meghan Jones at

For more information on Wisconsin’s bats and WNS, please visit: http://wiatri.net/inventory/bats/

Eastern Red Bat

The Urban Ecology Center’s bat research has received valuable funding from:

  • The Citizen-based Monitoring Network of Wisconsin’s Partnership Program.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency’s Great Lakes Research Initiative

And by a generous donation from Verne and Marion Read

Upcoming Events

Event Listings

Early Morning Birdwalks (Menomonee Valley)

Menomonee Valley

Tuesday, September 2nd

8:00 AM - 10:00 AM

More Details...

Burdock Brigade Tuesdays (Riverside Park)

Riverside Park

Tuesday, September 2nd

9:00 AM - 11:00 AM

More Details...

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