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The potential for acoustics as a conservation tool for monitoring small terrestrial mammals 2022


The use of acoustics has not previously been assessed as a tool for the large-scale monitoring of small terrestrial mammals (excluding bats). This report provides a first exploratory look at some of the possibilities that acoustics could offer for surveying small terrestrial mammals in the UK.

A library of known species' recordings collected under controlled conditions was used to estimate likely detection distances under average conditions based on the frequency and intensity of calls. Acoustic recording was then compared with live-trapping by pairing a Longworth trap with two acoustic detectors, one placed at a low level (0.3–0.5 m) and another placed at a height that is typically used in bat surveys (2.5–3 m).

The findings were examined in relation to the potential role of structured and unstructured monitoring of small mammals.

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Resource type Publication

Topic category Environment

Reference date 2022·04·12

Newson, S.E. & Pearce, H. 2022. The potential for acoustics as a conservation tool for monitoring small terrestrial mammals. JNCC Report No. 708, JNCC, Peterborough, ISSN 0963-8091.

This work was supported by the Terrestrial Surveillance Development and Analysis partnership of the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (UK CEH), British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) and JNCC.

Responsible organisation
Communications, JNCC publisher

Limitations on public access No limitations

Use constraints Available under the Open Government Licence 3.0

Metadata date 2022·04·19

Metadata point of contact
Communications, JNCC

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