Missouri Bats

Dr. Lynn Robbins  lynnrobbins@missouristate.edu


Research Interests

Our initial objective was to investigate the possibility of accurately identifying free flying bats using Anabat II bat detectors.  Since 1995 my students and I have made extensive use of the system. Our first priority was to familiarize ourselves with echolocation calls of the different species in our area. To achieve this we have been assembling a library of call sequences from bats of known identity. This library has been built from mainly from recordings of bats that were initially captured in mist nets or harp traps and visually identified to species. After identification the bats were light tagged and released in likely foraging areas. Our  library contains calls recorded from these free flying bats, and from bats foraging at dusk or leaving a single species roost. By analyzing these known identity calls with the program Analook, we have been able to quantitatively identify bats by their echolocation call structure. We are now using this ability to study different aspects of bat behavior and ecology.

The winter of 2007-08 signaled the end of our research on the winter roosting and activity of Eastern red, silver-haired, and evening bats.  Included in this study was characterization of the responses of red bats to prescribed fires.  We are currently preparing a number of manuscripts for publication. 

During the summer of 2007 we began studies on the distribution and behavior of the endangered Indiana bat as they relate to the placement and operations of wind energy facilities in northern Missouri. This work continued and expanded during the summer of 2008, and I anticipate that this will continue as new sites are developed and operations begin on the facilities now under development.  These studies include capture and radio-telemetry as well as extensive Anabat II detector analyses that will examine activity patterns as they relate to habitat, weather, and seasonal variables.  GIS technology is being utilized as a means to describe and predict distribution and movements as they relate to these variables. 

We began a three year study of the distribution of Indiana bats in the Ozarks Scenic Riverways as part of a National Park Service project designed to manage the forests within the Park in a way that will not negatively impact this endangered species.  This study will include capture, telemetry, ultrasonic detection (Anabat II), and mapping (GIS). 


Former Graduate Students

  •   John Timpone (2004)  "Summer Habitat Use of Five Species of Bats in NE Missouri"

  • Matthew Miller (2004)  "Activity and Foraging in three species of Myotis in NE Missouri"

  • Justin Boyles (2004)  "Summer and Winter Roosting Ecology of the Evening Bat"

  • Brad Mormann (2005)  "Winter Roosting Ecology of the Red Bats in Southwest"

  • Anna Scesny (2007)  "The Responses to fire by Torpid Eastern Red Bats "

  • Josh Flinn (2009) "Behavioral Responses of Roosting Red Bats to Winter Conditions"

  • Jason Layne (2009)  "Field Studies on the Response of Red Bats to Prescribed Fires"

  • Shelly Dey (2009) "Distribution and activity of Indiana bats as they relate to wind turbines"

Current Graduate Students

Bat students 2012

  • Janelle Bowcock. “Bat Occupancy in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways” 2009 – May 2012. 

  • Shannon Romeling. “Estimating and Evaluating the Effects of Mortality on Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis) Populations at Proposed Wind Energy Facilities” 2009 – May 2012.

    This project will describe and evaluate two methods. The first method will estimate expected levels of Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) mortality at proposed wind energy facilities and the second will estimate the potential effects of this mortality on the Indiana bat population over time.

  •  Benjamin Hale. “Evaluation of Myotis Activity and Habitat Use in Northern Missouri” 2009 – May 2012.

  •  Joseph R. Lemen. “Habitat Structure Analyses of Indiana Bat Maternity Colony Home Ranges” 2009 – May 2012.

  •  Larisa J. Bishop-Boros. “Modeling Seasonal Occupancy of Six Missouri Bat Species” January 2011 – present.

  •   Josh Parris. “Quantifying the Effects of Temperature Variation on Winter Emergence of Cave Myotis” 2011 – present.

  •  Kory Armstrong. “Use of Artificial Roosts for Myotis” 2012 – present.


Missouri State University Bat Lab: Presentations 2011


February 23-25, 2011 

Southeastern Bat Diversity Network, Louisville, KY


Oral Presentations


-          Lynn W. Robbins* and Shannon E. Romeling, Dept. of Biology, Missouri State University, Springfield, MO


-          C. Ryan Allen*, and Lynn W. Robbins, Department of Biology, Missouri State University, Springfield, MO


-          Benjamin T. Hale*, C. Ryan Allen, and Lynn W. Robbins, Missouri State University, Springfield, MO


Poster Presentations


-          Larisa J. Bishop-Boros*


-          Janelle L. Bowcock*, Benjamin T. Hale, Lynn W. Robbins, Department of Biology, Missouri State University; and Victoria Grant, National Park Service, Ozark National Scenic Riverways



October 7-8, 2011

Central Plains Society of Mammalogists, Doane College, Crete, NE


Oral Presentations

·         “A New Method for radio telemetry of Myotis bats when triangulation is not available”

-          Benjamin T. Hale*, Joseph R. Lemen, Rebecca E. Ringling, Lynn W. Robbins, Department of Biology, Missouri State University

·         “Maximum Entropy modeling of Indiana bat, Myotis sodali,s Maternity Roost Habitat”

-          Joseph R. Lemen* and W. Lynn Robbins, Department of Biology, Missouri State University.

·         “Interesting Bat Findings within the Ozark National Scenic Riverways”

-          Janelle Bowcock*, Lynn Robbins, Department of Biology, Missouri State University; and Victoria Grant, National Park Service, Ozark National Scenic Riverways


Poster Presentations

·          “Modeling seasonal occupancy of three bat species in northern Missouri”

-          Larisa J. Bishop-Boros*, Benjamin T. Hale, Shannon L. Romeling, C. Ryan Allen, and Lynn Robbins, Department of Biology, Missouri state University

·         “A Comparison of Full spectrum and Anabat Calls on a finite Time scale”

-          Shannon Romeling, Ryan Allen*, and Lynn Robbins, Biology department, Missouri State University.




October 26- October 29, 2011

North American Society for Bat Research, Toronto, Canada


Oral Presentations

·         “A New Method for Increasing Searcher Efficiency of Post-construction Mortality Surveys at Wind facilities”

-          Benjamin Hale and Lynn Robbins

·         “Maximum Entropy modeling of Myotis sodalis Maternity Roost Habitat”

-          Joseph Lemen and Lynn Robbins

·         “Site Occupancy of Bats within the Ozark National Scenic Riverways”

-          Janelle Bowcock, Lynn Robbins, and Victoria Grant


Poster Presentations

·         “A Comparison of Full spectrum and Anabat Calls on a finite Time scale”

-          Shannon Romeling, Ryan Allen, and Lynn Robbins

·         “Home Range Delineation and Activity of an Indiana Bat Maternity Colony”

-          Lynn Robbins, Ben Hale, and Joseph Lemen

·         “Seasonal Occupancy Modeling of Three Bat Species in Northern Missouri”

-          Larisa Bishop-Boros, S. Romeling, R. Allen, B. Hale, and L. Robbins

Snapshots from Field Season 2011

Bat people 1

Bat people 2

bat people 2

bat people 4

Publications and Reports

  • Murray, K. L., E. R. Britzke, and L. W. Robbins.  2001.  Variation in Search Phase Calls of Bats. J. Mammalogy, 82:728-737.

  • Britzke, E. R., and L. W. Robbins.  2002.  Distribution of the Eastern Woodrat, Neotoma floridana, in Missouri.  The Southwestern Naturalist, 47:125-127.

  • Britzke, E. R., K. L. Murray, J. E. Heywood, and L. W. Robbins. 2002.  Acoustic Identification. In The Indiana Bat: Biology and Management of an Endangered Species (Kurta and Kennedy, eds) Bat Conservation International, Austin, TX

  • Boyles, J.G., J.C. Timpone, and L.W. Robbins.  2003.  Winter Records and Notes on the Roosting Ecology of Red Bats and Evening Bats in Missouri.  Bat Research News, 44:59-61.

  • Mormann, B., M. Milam, and L. Robbins. 2004.Hibernation: Red Bats Do It In The Dirt. "Bats", The Publication of Bat Conservation International.22(2):6-9.

  • Boyles, J.G., B. Mormann, J.C. Timpone, and L.W. Robbins. 2005.  Use of a Subterranean Winter Roost by a Male Evening Bat.  Southeastern Naturalist, 4(2):375-377.

  •  Boyles, J.G. and L.W. Robbins. 2006.  Characteristics of Summer and Winter Roost Trees of Evening Bats (Nycticeius humeralis) in Southwestern Missouri.  American Midland Naturalist, 155:210-220.

  • Davis, C.R., F.B. Stangl, Jr., and L.W. Robbins. 2006.  Mammals of Fort Leavenworth, Kansas: A 60-Year Follow-up to Brumwell (1951). The Prairie Naturalist, 37(2):101-116.

  •  Timpone, J.C., J.G. Boyles, and L.W. Robbins.  2006.  Potential for niche-overlap in roosting sites between evening bats (Nycticeius humeralis) and big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus). Northeastern Naturalist. 13:597-602.

  • Mormann, B., and L.W. Robbins. 2007. Winter Roosting Ecology of Eastern Red Bats in Southwest Missouri. Journal of Wildlife Management. 71:213-217

  • Dunbar, M.B., J.O. Whitaker ,Jr., and L.W. Robbins. 2007. Winter Feeding by Bats in Southwestern Missouri. Acta Chiropterologica. 9:305-310.

  • Brack, V., Jr., C.R. Davis, and L.W. Robbins. 2007. Bats of Fort Leavenworth Military Reservation and Nearby Ares of Eastern Kansas and Western Missouri. Kansas Academy of Science Pp. 73-82

  • Kolaks, J. and L Robbins. 2007. Missouri's Winter Bats. Missouri Conservationist, 68:14-19.

  • Robbins, L. W., K. L. Murray, and P. McKenzie. 2008. Evaluating the Effectiveness the Standard Mist Netting Protocol for the Endangered Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis). Northeastern Naturalist.15:275-282.

  • Boyles, J.G., J.C. Timpone, and L.W. Robbins. 2009. Bats of Missouri. Indiana State University Center for N.A. Bat Research and Conservation. No.3: 60pp

  • Timpone, J.C., J.G. Boyles, D. Aubrey, and L.W. Robbins. 2010. Overlap in Roosting habits of the Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis) and the Northern Bat (Myotis septentrionalis). American Midlands Naturalist



Courses Taught

Advanced Vertebrate Zoology (BIO 767)

Game Management (BIO 589)

Mammalogy (BIO 577/677)



This page was last updated on 02/12/12.