Gaia Resources and Kyle Armstrong of Specialised Zoological have partnered to provide professional services for the acoustic detection of bat species.
The service we offer is the hire of Anabat SD1 bat detection equipment (pictured on the right), and the subsequent analysis of the data that these units collect. For the full range of services offered by Specialised Zoological, download the current Capability Statement here.
Gaia Resources manages the hire of the Anabat SD1 units on behalf of Specialised Zoological. We maintain this web interface and booking system, act as the collection and return point, arrange couriers, and perform all data download and unit maintenance. You can also post or courier data discs (MiniDiscs, audio tapes, CDs, CF cards) to us.
Once we have your data recordings, we send the files through to Specialised Zoological where Kyle performs the analysis to identify bat species and compiles a short report according to the recommended standards of the Australasian Bat Society Inc. suitable for inclusion as an appendix in a larger report.
All liaison and communications regarding hire dates, survey design, data analysis and reporting is through Specialised Zoological.
In order to hire these units, please fill in the request form found here.
This will automatically send your information through to Kyle at Specialised Zoological, who will contact you back by email or telephone with a quote for all costs. Specialised Zoological handle all quoting and booking on these units.
If you have already hired these units, and want to arrange their collection or return, please contact Gaia Resources. We can be contacted via email, during office hours on (08) 9227 7309, or at the physical location of:
Suite 4, Level 1, Building B
661 Newcastle Street
Leederville Western Australia 6007
The analysis of ultrasonic echolocation calls of bats with Anabat or other acoustic equipment is a very convenient way to determine the presence of bat species at a particular site. Often many more species can be identified at a greater number of sites using acoustic recording equipment than by trapping alone. However, the choice of electronic equipment, and the way it is used or deployed, will influence the success of the survey. The best approach and equipment used for surveying an entire bat assemblage might be different to those used when targeting only certain species. Also, the approach and equipment required in certain geographic regions might be different. The Australasian Bat Society Inc. recommends that bat surveys incorporate both trapping and acoustic detection, since the echolocation calls of some species are difficult to record, and others are difficult to distinguish. As with other aspects of a fauna survey, the approach, equipment and amount of effort will determine the quality and usefulness of the data.
It must also be understood that the reliability of the identifications is dependent on several factors. The robustness of identifications made from acoustic recordings will vary according to species, the quality of the recording, the number of pulses or sequences recorded, as well as the availability of comparative reference material from a particular geographic region. The highest level of confidence can only be gained by specimen capture and measurement and/or DNA analysis.
Thus, all identifications provided in reports by Specialised Zoological are made conservatively, with the degree of confidence indicated. The reports contain sufficient data to allow independent verification by other specialists – they include citations of reference material used, measurements of call parameters, and illustrations of representative call sequences – as recommended by the Australasian Bat Society Inc. in their standards. All raw data will be made available if further scrutiny is required, and if permission of the client is given.
To the right is a graphical representation of a sequence of echolocation pulses (time is compressed between each) from the Anabat system. Analysis involved measurement of various parameters that allow species identification.
Below right is a single pulse from the same species recorded with a different system (time expansion with a D240x detector from Pettersson Elektronik AB), showing additional harmonic and amplitude features.
There are various commercial units available for recording the ultrasonic echolocation calls of bats. Bat species can be identified from these calls.
The Anabat system is particularly convenient and efficient for general bat surveys. These units can be set to record automatically for an entire night (or several nights) at one location, or they can be used to actively search for certain species during night traverses in suitable habitat.
The Anabat SD1 unit is a compact and easy-to-use device that runs on standard AA batteries or an external battery for prolonged deployment. Ultrasonic echolocation (sonar) calls of bats are transformed into data that is stored on a Compact Flash card. We provide our hire units in a robust Pelican case, together with some simple instructions. They are very easy to use – essentially you will just turn them on and off and move them about. Site information is spoken into an inbuilt microphone at the start of the recording. Further information on the equipment can be found on the manufacturer's website – Titley Electronics or HoaryBat.
For further information please contact Kyle Armstrong directly if you would like to discuss the design of your bat survey. Please also enquire about equipment other than Anabat, including the Pettersson D500x and acoustic monitoring of ghost bats. More details can be found in the Specialised Zoological Capability Statement.