SEABCRU member Kendra Phelps speaks at 1st heART Youth Camp

The 1st annual heART Youth Camp was hosted by Congressman Art Yap on the campus of Bohol Island State University – Bilar from June 25-26th, 2011.  The purpose of the camp was to inspire Boholano youth ages 15 to 30 to pursue their career passions by broadening their knowledge bases.  The weekend activities included presentations covering a vast range of topics, including Philippine biodiversity.  Related to this topic, Kendra gave a presentation entitled “Biodiversity and Conservation of an Uncharismatic Fauna…..Bats!” that over 100 students attended.  Basic information provided to the students included: what is a bat, what bats eat, where bats live, general bat classification, diversity of Philippine bat species, threats to bats, and how to conserve bats through outreach and research activities.  At the end of the presentation methods for capturing bats were demonstrated including mist nets and hand nets as well as how to use an echolocation detector.

Four of the students that attended Kendra’s presentation are now working on their senior thesis in conjunction with her dissertation research on Bohol, including a student who is studying population ecology of a common cave bat species (Hipposideros diadema). To date these students have participated in surveying bat populations roosting in 4 caves on the island, from which they have learned how to capture and properly handle bats, take standard morphological measurements, and identify species of cave bats.