“Bat boxes” could help in the recovery of tropical rainforest after deforestation, reports research described in New Scientist Magazine.
Placing artificial bat roosts in deforested areas in Costa Rica, Detlev Kelm at the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in Berlin, Germany, and colleagues found that 5-20 times as many seeds were deposited around the roosts as in areas that lacked roosts. The results suggest bat roosts could be a effective strategy for helping tropical forests regenerate after clearing.
“Importantly, the seeds included those of ‘pioneer’ plants that kick-start forest renewal,” stated New Scientist Magazine. “They rapidly grow foliage, providing cover for other seed-dispersers, such as birds and insects, that would otherwise avoid the open spaces.”
Previous research has also suggested that attracting bats can assist in reforestation efforts. Bats are important seed dispersers in tropical forests.
The original research will be published in Conservation Biology.