Bats in the Anthropocene: Conservation of Bats in a Changing World. 2016. Voigt and Kingston. Springer.
In keeping with our species pick profile for this newsletter, take a look at this e-book from 2016 on bats, available for free (open access) through Springer Link! Thanks to SCCP Steering Committee member Greg Ferguson for sharing this resource.
It is unusual to be able to access a comprehensive publication focused on the science, conservation, perspectives and management of this unique order of mammals.
Here is an excerpt from the introduction:
"This book focuses on central themes related to the conservation of bats. It details their response to land-use change and management practices, intensified urbanization and roost disturbance and loss. Increasing interactions between humans and bats as a result of hunting, disease relationships, occupation of human dwellings, and conflict over fruit crops are explored in depth. Finally, contributors highlight the roles that taxonomy, conservation networks and conservation psychology have to play in conserving this imperilled but vital taxon."
"With over 1300 species, bats are the second largest order of mammals, yet as the Anthropocene dawns, bat populations around the world are in decline. Greater understanding of the anthropogenic drivers of this decline and exploration of possible mitigation measures are urgently needed if we are to retain global bat diversity in the coming decades.
This book brings together teams of international experts to provide a global review of current understanding and recommend directions for future research and mitigation."
Readers should especially note the chapter on light pollution, which is becioing an increasingly important issue to consider as urbanization spreads and new lighting technologies light up the streets - and night skies! The last set of chapters focus on conservation and education approaches, rounding out the e-book to focus on the social context of conservation, something that the SCCP employs on a daily basis. This book isn't heavy on imagery, but it captures the key aspects of bat conservation challenges, and approaches to addressing them, the last chapter's heading pretty much sums it up "Cute, Creepy, or Crispy—How Values, Attitudes, and Norms Shape Human Behavior Toward Bats".