Wildlife Acoustics Blog

SM2 Yearly Maintenance

SM2 Yearly Maintenance

If you have recorders from the Wildlife Acoustics SM2 family, there are a number of things you should do annually to make sure each is ready for the next recording season:

  • Replace the two AA batteries that run the clock with brand new alkalines. See our past blog post for a trick on how to do this
  • Check that the hex nuts that are around the outside of the various ports are hand-tight. These can sometimes get loose and will allow in water. Never use a wrench to tighten these
  • Check that the white hex shaped vent port is also hand-tight. Again, never use a wrench on this.
  • Look for any visible damage to the SD card slots
  • Look for any signs of water intrusion
  • Check the lid gasket for tears or anything that would interfere with a good seal such as pine needles
  • Update the firmware to the latest available
  • Test your microphones. Acoustic microphones can be tested by creating a manual recording and listening to it. Ultrasonic microphones should be tested using the optional Ultrasonic Calibrator tool available from Wildlife Acoustics
  • Finally, always create test recordings prior to each deployment to verify that the recorder is functioning as expected and all settings are correct.

In the Field: Bat Conservation and Education in Rwanda

In the Field: Bat Conservation and Education in Rwanda

We love hearing about how our tools are being used around the world and we know that you do too. I recently asked Winifred Frick, Director of Conservation Science at Bat Conservation International to update us on their use of the Song Meter SM4BAT and Echo Meter Touch in Africa. Below is what she had to say about the beginnings of their recent effort in Rwanda: 

Dave Waldien (Sr. Director of Global Conservation at BCI) and I just returned from a week long trip to Rwanda where we met with key stakeholders to help initiate a bat conservation initiative at Nyungwe National Park using acoustic detectors to determine the population status of a critically endangered bat – the Hill’s horseshoe bat (Rhinolophus hilli) that is an Albertine Rift Endemic and only known from a few historic records from Nyungwe National Park in southern Rwanda.  As the meeting was primarily an initial site visit to assess the feasibility of initiating a study in collaboration with local partners (including WCS and the Rwanda Development Board), we didn’t collect any data on this initial trip. Although we did bring the SM4BATs to show the local partners what the units look like and what they are capable of.  In addition, I gave a presentation and demonstration to students at the Kitabi College of Conservation and Environmental Management.  

The students were all very interested in the Echo Meter Touch and echolocation analysis and eager for more information and more training opportunities.  We’re in the process now of writing some grant proposals to fund future work there and hoping to do a bat-blitz style training/workshop to help build an echolocation call library for Nyungwe to help facilitate bat research and conservation in the park.  Nyungwe National Park is one of the largest tracts of African montane rainforest left intact and a truly spectacular place.  The park was created in 2006 and is actively managed by both WCS and the Rwanda Development Board.  

We're partnering with ERM to provide bat acoustics training courses

We're partnering with ERM to provide bat acoustics training courses

We know that the demand for training courses is always high, so we are happy to announce that we are partnering with Environmental Resources Management to provide several bat acoustics training courses in 2017.

The first of these is a 3-day, hands-on bat acoustics and analysis training course. It's taking place from January 9-11, 2017 in Amherst, Massachusetts and immediately precedes the Northeast Bat Working Group meeting in the same location, making it convenient for those who are already planning to attend the meeting. 

The course will cover bat echolocation, data management, visual vetting, troubleshooting, and more. Participants will also learn how to use the Wildlife Acoustics Song Meter SM4BAT, Echo Meter Touch, and Kaleidoscope Pro software. 

Wildlife Acoustics is proud to support wildlife conservation efforts

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