Bat Fieldworker course
The bat field workers course provides opportunities to undergraduates to learn how to conduct fieldwork with the focus on bats. The course has been designed to be hands on and practical, where different capture techniques are undertaken, data to be collected during fieldwork, how to analyse the data collected and to write this data up. Different field techniques will be examined which we hope will skill students to then return to their study areas and then implement these skills in their research projects.
Prerequisites: Completed the Introduction to Bat Ecology, Biology, Conservation and Identification course and have participated in a minimum of 10 batting events as an observer. For those who do not meet these prerequisites two weeks before the commencement of the field course, the introduction course will be conducted and opportunities to obtain the nessasary observation events to meet the prerequites. This is a 5-week period in the field. All participants must provide proof that they have had rabies preexposure and tetanus inoculations (this is not negotiable) as participants will be handling live bats in the field. You must be fit and also be prepared to work on average 16-18hrs per day/night.
Duration: 21 days
Venues: This course is undertaken at the Meletse Bat Research and Conservation Training Centre (near Thabazimbi).
- Scientific thinking and writing
- Basic GIS
- Species richness and estimators
- Setting up mist nets and harp traps
- Removal of live bats from mist nets and harp traps
- Handling and measurements of live bats
- Capture and recording of biological information from captured bats
- Analysis of information recorded & biological statistic using captured data
- Bat detectors and call analyis (Building an echolocation call library)
- Report results
You could walk away with
Participants will have the opportunity to attempt their Bat Field Worker certification, by successfully completing a theoretical and practical assessments. Students who have successfully complete the Field workers course, will also be considered for possible placement as volunteers or short term contacts (where appropriate) on other AfricanBats field based projects. Potential bat academic supervisors will also be more inclined to accept students who already have field experience with bats.