Bat Species of Ibera
The Esteros del Ibera is a vast, relatively undiscovered wetland and, until recently, little study has been done on its bat species and certainly none in the northern gateway known as Cambyreta.
Due to the amount of water and thus insects, it is a paradise for insectivorous bats. Limitations are the amount of available roosts as there are few buildings and the trees are generally shorter than 15m. It is likely that bats come to hunt in the area from some of the small towns and villages around the wetlands. We also have an abundance of native fruit which attracts fruit eating species especially in the warmer months.
However we have found several tree roosts and the two houses, cabana and shed at the reserve are teeming with bats - mostly Molossus temminckii or Dwarf Dog-faced Bat and Eumops patagonicus or Patagonian Bonneted Bat.
We are well underway on a new bat call library for Cambyreta and for this we need many bat recordings. We have already recorded around 16 different species of bat around the houses and now own a Wildlife Acoustics SM4Bat. This we are placing in remote areas for around a week at a time and analysing the results using Kaleidoscope Pro. We also record all hand releases of insectivorous bats.
The large lakes in Ibera are ideal for the family Noctilionidae which are known as the fishing Bats. We captured both Noctilio albiventris and its larger cousin, Noctilio leporinus along the banks of the River Parana in 2018. They both hunt low over the water, the former hunting insects and the latter small fish. We have some good recordings of both species on release and the shape of the pulse is very distinctive.
The majority of our bat research nowadays includes capturing bats for ID and biometrics in Corrientes and surrounding provinces, in particular Misiones. We have some high end equipment including 2 Harp traps, 1 triple high set up as well as a double high, many singles, hand nets etc. We also have a team of volunteers which assist in the running of our night netting sessions.
Our authorisations to conduct bat research in the province of Corrientes have been approved by Recurses Naturales and Parques y Reservas. &We also now have authorisation to conduct research in Misiones&, our neighbouring province to the NE, which has several new species for us to study.
We put up wooden Kent bat boxes at the reserve and one is constantly occupied by a small Molossidae bat, most likely Eumops patagonicus. We designed a "Bat Condo" based on the Wisconsin design and that has been up at the reserve since June 2018. So far we have only seen a Myotis species using this large bathouse but still expect others to be attracted in due course.
The following photos are of bats we have caught, measured, identified, photographed, recorded and released over the past three years. Most of these bats can be found in Corrientes, and the majority in the Ibera Marshes.