Skip to main content
Skip to main content

WKU News

Arizona BatWatch research project launches second season of videos

Arizona BatWatch research project launches second season of videos

Caption: Lesser long-nosed bats are pollinators that feed on the nectar of agave and columnar cacti, such as this saguaro cactus. (Photo by Merlin D. Tuttle, Bat Conservation International) 

A woman sits on her couch, pulls out her laptop and watches a video of bats. As she watches, she records how many bats she sees, what the bats are doing, and if there are any other animals in the video. In other parts of the country, and even the world, similar scenes are taking place as thousands of people participate in a research project called Arizona BatWatch. They are helping scientists learn more about the behaviors of a group of bats located in southwestern Arizona.

Arizona BatWatch is an online research project that engages the public in scientific research through citizen science. Anyone can participate in the project by going to www.ArizonaBatWatch.org. After reading the short tutorial to learn what to look for, participants watch 10-second videos of bats flying around an abandoned mine and answer three questions about what they see in the video. Arizona BatWatch launched its second season of videos Tuesday (Aug. 8).

“We are excited about the new season of videos,” said Shannon Trimboli, the creator of Arizona BatWatch and Education Coordinator of the Mammoth Cave International Center for Science and Learning, a partnership between WKU and Mammoth Cave National Park. “Recently we ran a short trial to test some new options with the project. We received great feedback from our participants and based on that feedback we are making a few changes to the project, such as shortening the videos from 20 seconds to 10 seconds.”

Arizona BatWatch launched its first season of videos in October 2016. The project uses videos from Coronado National Memorial located in southwestern Arizona. The bats in the videos are lesser long-nosed bats (Leptonycteris curasoae). The lesser long-nosed bat is an endangered species that lives in Mexico, Arizona and New Mexico. It is a pollinator and feeds on the nectar and pollen of agave and columnar cacti. Lesser long-nosed bats will also visit hummingbird feeders that are left outside overnight.

“We are thankful to everyone who has participated in Arizona BatWatch so far,” Trimboli said. “In the past nine months over 2,000 people from around the world have helped to classify over 30,000 videos.”

In addition to the opportunity to participate in the research, the Arizona BatWatch website also includes educational opportunities. The website includes detailed information about the project, lesser long-nosed bats, general bat-related questions and the data being collected. It also includes discussion boards where participants can ask questions and share their findings.

“We invite everyone to participate in Arizona BatWatch,” Trimboli said. “It is a great way to get involved and help scientists learn more about bats.”

Arizona BatWatch was funded through a National Science Foundation grant (1223908). Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

For information about Arizona BatWatch, contact Shannon Trimboli, Education Coordinator of the Mammoth Cave International Center for Science and Learning, 270-758-2422 or shannon.trimboli@wku.edu

The Mammoth Cave International Center for Science and Learning is a partnership between WKU and Mammoth Cave National Park. At WKU, it is housed within the Dean’s Office of Ogden College of Science and Engineering.

Contact: Shannon Trimboli, (270) 758-2422

Categories
All News  Now Viewing Category: All
Media Relations
President Caboni News
CEBS
CHHS News
GFCB
Ogden News
PCAL
Academic Affairs
WKU Regional Campuses
Glasgow News
Etown & Fort Knox
Owensboro News
Transportation
The Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky
The Center for Gifted Studies
Police
Emergency Preparedness
Facilities
Housing & Residence Life
Student Activities and Organizations
Augenstein Alumni Center
Campus Activities Board
The Confucius Institute
Cultural Enhancement Series
DELO News
Department of Music
Department of Theatre & Dance
Development and Alumni Relations
Downing Museum
Downing Student Union
Employee Wellness
Hardin Planetarium
Health Services
Human Resources News
Instruments of American Excellence
International Student Office
Kinesiology, Recreation & Sport
Library News
Math News
Office of International Programs
Office of Research
Office of Sustainability
Parent's Association
School of Journalism & Broadcasting
Student Financial Assistance
Scholarships Student Financial Assistance
Student Employment
Student Government Association News
Student Research Council
Study Abroad
Van Meter Auditorium
WellU
WKU Educational Leadership Doctoral Program News
WKU Joint Admissions
WKU Parent and Family Weekend
Latest Headlines
PTS EVENT UPDATE: Great American Eclipse

Sunday, August 20th and Monday, August 21st

PTS EVENT UPDATE Raffertys Bowl

Saturday, August 19th

WKU Admissions hosting events for prospective students & their families

WKU Office of Admissions is taking its DiscoverWKU events across the United States this fall.

Featured Articles
Sodexo pledges $650,000 to scholarship assistance for employees, dependents

Sodexo has made a gift commitment to WKU to establish the Sodexo Scholarship Fund to support their employees, as well as their dependents, in the pursuit of higher education at any campus of WKU.

WKU presents faculty, staff awards at convocation

The annual faculty and staff awards were presented Friday morning at WKU’s 2017 opening convocation.

President Caboni outlines strategic planning, doing in charting future

WKU President Timothy C. Caboni outlined the strategic planning process for WKU’s future as well as new initiatives being implemented this fall during the annual Faculty Staff Convocation Friday.

Note: documents in Portable Document Format (PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher to view,
download Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Note: documents in Excel format (XLS) require Microsoft Viewer,
download excel.

Note: documents in Word format (DOC) require Microsoft Viewer,
download word.

Note: documents in Powerpoint format (PPT) require Microsoft Viewer,
download powerpoint.

Note: documents in Quicktime Movie format [MOV] require Apple Quicktime,
download quicktime.

 
 Last Modified 5/2/17