Dr. David C. Lahti, Queens College, City University of New York
Capturing song diversity in African weaverbirds
Weaverbirds are renowned for their extraordinarily long and complex songs. Dr. Lahti will be using the Song Meter SM4 acoustic recorder to discretely capture the song repertoires of several individual weaverbirds of six different species. The recordings will be used to perform a detailed analysis of song culture diversity at three different scales: within the individual, between-individuals, and between species-called the macroevolution of song.
This research is unique in that very few studies have ever addressed the concept of song diversity resulting from social learning. David hopes to prove that song diversity can indicate rare morphs and subspecies at least as effectively, and more cheaply than genetic methods can. Dr. Lahti will make individual weaverbird songs available for public use because they will be of higher quality and more specific than colony-wide songs.
Miguel Ordeñana, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
Large Scale Urban Bat Ecology Study.
Miguel's work will be the first large-scale study of bat habitat usage in urban and suburban settings. As part of the museum's SuperProject; the world's largest urban biodiversity inventory, citizen science teams will use Song Meter SM4BAT FS recorders and Kaleidoscope Pro software to collect and analyze data from some of the 200 "super sites" . The results will be used as part of a baseline study to determine the effects of forage availability, proximity to the urban edge, climate, land use, and land cover on bat activity levels and species richness. Researchers will use the long-term, baseline data with respect to the response of bats to urbanization and other environmental variables in Southern California.
The results of the study will provide data that can inform property owners and city planners how to provide suitable roosting and foraging habitat for Southern California bat species in urban areas or land undergoing urbanization in varying habitats and in varying proximities to the urban edge.