Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Jones, Jeanne C.

Committee Member

Leopold, Bruce D.

Committee Member

Jones, W. Daryl

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture

Degree Name

Master of Science


College of Forest Resources


Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture


White-nose Syndrome (WNS) has caused declines in bat populations in many areas of North America. To understand bat use and fungus presence in caves and culverts in Mississippi, I recorded bat species and abundance in these sites, roosting site characteristics, and incidence of WNS in selected caves and culverts used by bats. Sixteen caves and 214 culverts were surveyed from November-March 2010-2015. Five bat species were detected, and tricolor bats (Perimyotis subflavus) and southeastern myotis (Myotis austroriparius) were most abundant. Over five years, 3,789 roosting bats were recorded in caves and 16,812 were detected in culverts. I found significant relationships between bat numbers in culverts and microclimate conditions, dimensions, and proximity to public lands (P < 0.03). This study can help biologists with prioritization of protection and monitoring of culvert and cave roost sites and provide a greater understanding WNS incidence in these sites.