Acoustic Monitoring

is essential for helping study and conserve bats in North America.

Throughout North America, bats are the primary predators of nocturnal flying insects, providing millions of dollars in pest control services annually. Bats occur in nearly every habitat on the continent, from high elevation alpine forests to deserts and neighborhoods within our largest cities.

Because bats fly in the dark of night, it is challenging to understand their behaviors and monitor their population status.

To get around this challenge, biologists use bat detectors to better understand bat ecology. These devices record the echolocation calls of nearby bats, and combined with specialized software and expert knowledge, biologists can often identify bat species from these detections. Biologists deploy these detectors for one or more nights at locations across the continent throughout the year, and may monitor presence or activity of various bat species each night.

Progress so far:

  • 28,345,428 total bat detections
  • 6,065,673 detections of 34 species
  • 193,659 nights monitored during 13 years
  • 1,377 detectors operated by 76 contributors across 35 states and provinces

Bat Acoustic Monitoring Portal

This application is a companion to the Bat Acoustic Monitoring Portal (BatAMP).

BatAMP provides a central platform where biologists can upload their detection data in order to better understand the distribution, seasonal movement patterns, and population status of bats across North America. These data are then compiled for visualization within this tool.

Learn more about how to contribute data to BatAMP.

Bat Acoustic Monitoring Visualization Tool

This application enables you to explore bat monitoring data for 34 species across North America, allowing you to explore seasonal trends in species detections and explore bat activity for a particular location.

Explore detailed monitoring data for each of the species included in this application. Each species has a dedicated visualization page that enables you to:

  • explore seasonal trends in activity or detections for different locations around North America.
  • explore locations where the species has been detected compared to areas where the species was not detected.
  • filter the data to explore trends for a given state or province as well as a given time period or season. You are able to combine multiple filters for season, year, state / province, and more.
  • view detailed detection information for each bat detector.

Explore occurrence data aggregated across all species within this application. This allows you to:

  • explore trends in species co-occurrence.
  • see how many species have been detected at a given location based on sampling effort.
  • explore which species are detected in particular regions simply by zooming the map to the area you are interested in.
  • identify species mis-identification and information gaps.
Note: due to the methods involved in identifying echolocation calls to species, some species may be mis-identified may be present in the data used by this application. You should be particularly cautious with detections that are well outside the known range for the species.

Made possible by contributors like you

This application leverages the combined efforts of 76 contributors and would not be possible without their hard work. Together, these contributors have collected over 28,345,428 bat detections on 193,659 nights using 1,377 detectors, and they have collected 6,065,673 detections of at least 34 species.

Top contributors
sort:species detectionsbat detectionsnights monitoreddetectorsspecies detected
Montana NHP
3,047,074 detections
on 66,293 nights
using 184 detectors.

8 species detected.
50%of detections
Kevin Heist
1,652,978 detections
on 34,393 nights
using 274 detectors.

14 species detected.
27%of detections
Karen Blejwas
836,525 detections
on 41,592 nights
using 119 detectors.

2 species detected.
14%of detections
Jenny Barnett
177,544 detections
on 4,816 nights
using 19 detectors.

13 species detected.
3%of detections
Samantha Marcum
56,192 detections
on 844 nights
using 4 detectors.

17 species detected.
0.9%of detections
Ted Weller
54,442 detections
on 34,005 nights
using 113 detectors.

21 species detected.
0.9%of detections

And Tom Malloy, Paul Burger, Jared Tomie, Dirk Gard, Christine Swanson, Todd Mabee, Cris Hein, Shawn Thomas, Jeff Mach, Jennifer Krauel, Erin Baerwald, Liz Revette, Becky Abel, Bill Tietje, Katrina Schultes, Jeffrey Clerc, Tim Catton, Catherine Johnson, Frank McLaughlin, Nadine Hergenrider, Ella Rowan, Barbara Erlandson, David Delmonte, Philip Huber, Gary Kolesar, Rick Dulik, Janie Agyagos, Robin Garwood, Peggy Plass, James McRacken, Jonathan Kauffman, Ned Lockwood, Devon Green, Jessica Ilse, Pete Johnston, Steve Anderson, Claudio Biltoc, Christina Atkins, Monte Kuk, Tracy Grazia, Christina Akins, Kary Schlick, Donald DeBolt, Cassandra Marszal, Kristin Henderson, Jennifer Gatlin, Tom Rickman, Dennis Arakelian, Ashley Egan, Susan Yasuda, Carla De Julio, Coye Burnett, Gordon Watts, Corinna Pinzari, Barb Smith, Linda Angerer, Cheron Ferland, Bill Gorewich, Jessup Weichelt, Brett Hillman, Ivana Noell, Jeff Jewkes, Theresa Lowe, Todd Stewart, Brooklyn Reardon, Lauren Hoyle, Kristen Warren, Jason Kelton, Thomas Ryon, Robin Eliason.