Wildlife Acoustics Blog


A New Way to Tackle White Nose Syndrome: Artificial Bat Cave

The deadly fungus that causes White Nose Syndrome has claimed more than 6 million bats since it was identified in 2006. It has been a crisis for bats all over the Eastern US and Canada. Yet despite desperate efforts by various research groups and organizations, the epidemic has sprinted on at an alarming rate, threatening eventual extinction for several bat species.

Last year, The Nature Conservancy of Tennessee employed an all-new strategy. They built an artificial bat cave. The operation is more complicated than it sounds. The cave needed to have just the right conditions – the wrong temperature and humidity could spell disaster for the already weak populations. It also needed to be free of humans, who have been known to accidentally spread the disease from cave to cave.

Artificial Bat Cave under construction

The artificial bat cave under construction


In the Field with the SM2M and the Marine Education and Research Society.

In the Field with the SM2M and the Marine Education and Research Society.

We always enjoy hearing research updates from scientists who have deployed Wildlife Acoustics devices around the world. Recently, we caught up with Jared Towers, Minke Whale Research Director at MERS, to hear about the exciting research developments they have made with Minke whales. Here’s what he had to say:

“The MERS [Marine Education and Research Society] conducts research on Baleen whales off of Northern Vancouver Island, in British Columbia, Canada. In the summer of 2012 we deployed a Wildlife Acoustics SM2M near the community of Alert Bay in an area where Minke whales regularly occur. The SM2M was deployed in 70 feet of water for a total of 108 days and programmed to make back-to-back 3-hour recordings. During 54 of these days, we made 568 hours of visual observations of marine mammals from shore less than 150 metres from where the SM2M was deployed. In total, 9 species were observed and 6 (including Minke whales) were acoustically recorded. This kind of shore-based visual and acoustic research has allowed us to expand our study methods of baleen whales and other marine mammals, while concurrently reducing our impact on their behaviour and environment.”

For more information about their research check out MERS blog post featuring the SM2M.

How to get the most out of your SM2+ recorder

How to get the most out of your SM2+ recorder

Hello again All,

So, pop quiz, what firmware revision are your SM2s running? Right now? Do you know where your firmware is?

All joking aside, keeping your firmware updated is one of the easiest ways to make sure that your SM2 recorders are running up to snuff. Every time our engineering staff releases a new version, you can be assured that bugs will be fixed and (maybe) a few new features will be added. Let’s take a look one of the great things that the latest firmware revision as of this writing (3.2.5) holds for you: the SD Card Speed Test.

Wildlife Acoustics is proud to support wildlife conservation efforts

Merlin Tuttle's Bat Conservation Bat Conservation International Bat Conservation Trust Wildlife Habitat Counsil