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Academic & Professional Books  Mammals  Bats (Chiroptera)

Acoustic Ecology of European Bats Species Identification, Study of their Habitats and Foraging Behaviour

New Edition SPECIAL OFFER
By: Michel Barataud(Author), Yves Tupinier(Contributor), Herman JGA Limpens(Contributor), Anya Cockle-Betian(Translated by), Hans-Ulrich Schnitzler(Preface By), Ingemar Ahlén(Preface By)
368 pages, colour photos, colour & b/w illustrations, colour tables
Publisher: BIOTOPE
NHBS
This unique, richly illustrated book allows users of bat detectors to identify species from their calls
Acoustic Ecology of European Bats
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  • Acoustic Ecology of European Bats ISBN: 9782366622447 Edition: 2 Hardback Jun 2020 In stock
    £59.99
    #250491
  • Acoustic Ecology of European Bats ISBN: 9782366621440 Edition: 1 Hardback Jul 2015 In stock
    £44.99£59.99
    #215856
Selected version: £59.99
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About this book

Language: English

Bats evolved to fly in the dark and developed echolocation to navigate in these conditions. Even though we cannot hear their calls, we can record and analyse them with appropriate equipment and software.

The author acquired unique knowledge and skills over more than three decades of continuous research on bat ultrasonic calls. In Acoustic Ecology of European Bats he uses here advanced computer-assisted analysis to supplement the auditory approach to ultrasound analysis he initially developed in France.

The method described makes it possible to identify about 85% of bat acoustic records in Europe and to carry out non-invasive bat assessments and in-depth surveys. Thirty-five of the 42 bat species present in Europe are covered.

Acoustic Ecology of European Bats also includes access to more than 300 downloadable files online that can be used to practice and develop skills in identifying bats by their sonar signals. This replaces the DVD-ROM that came with the first edition.

Customer Reviews (1)

  • excellent with reservations
    By Justin 20 Jul 2015 Written for Hardback
    First I have to say that this book was a wonderful revelation in the realm of analysing recordings of bat echolocation signals and trying to identify species from their calls (and vice versa). The approach taken here is a signal analytic one, rather than a description by species (as used for example by Russ – also an invaluable reference and for British bat workers an indispensable companion to the current work). Barataud considers the situation of identification using either heterodyne bat detectors, or, more comprehensively, recorded signals from a time expansion bat detector which is also applicable to full bandwidth recordings. He places great weight on audible identification of call characteristics – requiring some comprehensive 'ear training' – accompanied by detailed measurements of call parameters measured from computer generated spectrograms. The latter are used in conjunction with a large number of scatter diagrams, comparing various parameter pairs, in order to distinguish between species with similar calls.

    The approach is new to me and appears to be effective and the presentation and layout of the book is clear and easy to follow through the analytic process and I would strongly recommend this book to anyone needing to analyse recordings of bat echolocation calls, whether in some sub-region of the area covered by the book, or in a wider global context. However, I do have some reservations.

    I do consider that it is a shame that he bases all his descriptions of how to set up and view spectrograms are based on the use of an expensive commercial program which is possibly beyond the pocket of many amateur naturalists (I certainly can't afford it!). He also bases all his measurements on the appearance of colour contour boundaries, which are artificial and arbitrary boundaries set by the analysis software and which disguise the fact that signals do not have rigid boundaries. I am sure that using the concept of half amplitude boundaries in time and frequency, could provide more objective and reliable parameters, possibly negating the need for subjective aural judgements.

    The aural judgements are made by learning from a generous and broad based collection of recordings, supplied on DVD. Many of these are excellent and provide the opportunity to experience the sounds of species that it would be difficult for many readers to observe directly. However, using them for ear training is somewhat flawed by the fact that so may of the recordings are heavily overloaded (and overloading can occur at several places in the recording chain, not just in the digitisation stage – a fact not stressed sufficiently in the book) resulting in the recordings having a large number of artefacts which are not identified as such by the author.

    The author does provide some references at the back of the book, but regrettably makes little use of them in the text, even when a reference is strongly called for. For example he always refers to Rhinolophus as using predominantly the fourth harmonic, with a low amplitude second harmonic and completely suppressed fundamental and third harmonics (although he does insist on calling the fundamental a 'first harmonic' – a habit which I was always taught was reprehensible – but we will attribute that deficiency to an error of translation). All other references over the last 55 odd years that I know of consider that Rhinolophus, Hipposideros and the new world cf bats emit strongly in the second harmonic with a suppressed or very quiet fundamental, and this has always appeared to be supported by ontogeny studies. If there is some new, strong evidence for this assumption being wrong then it definitely needs to be cited, and even defended. There are also several other places where I would like to see wider ranger comparisons from the literature – such as in his discussions of two-tone calling where he completely ignores the implications of Pye's observations on Saccopteryx – but I will not attempt to detail them all here.

    Overall I would praise the author for his efforts in producing this book and it will form an essential desk-top reference for me when analysing recordings. I will make grateful use of his charts and procedures, while adapting them slightly to my own processes, procedures and software. I would strongly recommend this book to all bat sound analysers, while reserving judgement, or ignoring the parts in which I have less faith.
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Biography

Michel Barataud has spent many years researching bat sonar signals, not only in Europe but also in the Guyanas and Lesser Antilles. Drawing on his personal field experience and his ability to make the most of technological advances, he has developed an efficient identification method and disseminated his findings through a large number of publications.  A dedicated teacher, he has trained several hundred bat enthusiasts in ultrasound analysis and fostered a vast network of naturalists.

Yves Tupinier is pioneer in bioacoustics and a life-long friend. His contribution to this book is a precious addition.

New Edition SPECIAL OFFER
By: Michel Barataud(Author), Yves Tupinier(Contributor), Herman JGA Limpens(Contributor), Anya Cockle-Betian(Translated by), Hans-Ulrich Schnitzler(Preface By), Ingemar Ahlén(Preface By)
368 pages, colour photos, colour & b/w illustrations, colour tables
Publisher: BIOTOPE
NHBS
This unique, richly illustrated book allows users of bat detectors to identify species from their calls
Media reviews

"[...] Acoustic Ecology of European Bats contains a wealth of as yet unpublished information indispensable to amateur naturalists and professionals involved in the management of protected areas or in environmental impact studies. This is the most extensive reference on the acoustic identification of European bats. [...]"
– Stuart Newson, BTO book reviews

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