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Open AccessArticle

Clean and Green Urban Water Bodies Benefit Nocturnal Flying Insects and Their Predators, Insectivorous Bats

1
School of BioSciences, The University of Melbourne, Parkville VIC 3010, Australia
2
Ecosystem Science/Plant Ecology, Department of Ecology, Technische Universität Berlin, 12165 Berlin, Germany
3
Berlin-Brandenburg Institute of Advanced Biodiversity Research (BBIB), 14195 Berlin, Germany
4
Arthur Rylah Institute for Environmental Research, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, Heidelberg VIC 3084, Australia
5
Ecology and Infrastructure International, Wantirna VIC 3152, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(7), 2634; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12072634
Received: 25 February 2020 / Revised: 15 March 2020 / Accepted: 18 March 2020 / Published: 26 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Urban Development)
Nocturnal arthropods form the prey base for many predators and are an integral part of complex food webs. However, there is limited understanding of the mechanisms influencing invertebrates at urban water bodies and the potential flow-on effects to their predators. This study aims to: (i) understand the importance of standing water bodies for nocturnal flying insect orders, including the landscape- and local-scale factors driving these patterns; and (ii) quantify the relationship between insects and insectivorous bats. We investigated nocturnal flying insects and insectivorous bats simultaneously at water bodies (n = 58) and non-water body sites (n = 35) using light traps and acoustic recorders in Melbourne, Australia. At the landscape scale, we found that the presence of water and high levels of surrounding greenness were important predictors for some insect orders. At the water body scale, low levels of sediment pollutants, increased riparian tree cover and water body size supported higher insect order richness and a greater abundance of Coleopterans and Trichopterans, respectively. Most bat species had a positive response to a high abundance of Lepidopterans, confirming the importance of this order in the diet of insectivorous bats. Fostering communities of nocturnal insects in urban environments can provide opportunities for enhancing the prey base of urban nocturnal insectivores. View Full-Text
Keywords: Chiroptera; invertebrates; pollutants; predator-prey relationship; urbanisation; urban water bodies Chiroptera; invertebrates; pollutants; predator-prey relationship; urbanisation; urban water bodies
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MDPI and ACS Style

Straka, T.M.; Lentini, P.E.; Lumsden, L.F.; Buchholz, S.; Wintle, B.A.; van der Ree, R. Clean and Green Urban Water Bodies Benefit Nocturnal Flying Insects and Their Predators, Insectivorous Bats. Sustainability 2020, 12, 2634. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12072634

AMA Style

Straka TM, Lentini PE, Lumsden LF, Buchholz S, Wintle BA, van der Ree R. Clean and Green Urban Water Bodies Benefit Nocturnal Flying Insects and Their Predators, Insectivorous Bats. Sustainability. 2020; 12(7):2634. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12072634

Chicago/Turabian Style

Straka, Tanja M.; Lentini, Pia E.; Lumsden, Linda F.; Buchholz, Sascha; Wintle, Brendan A.; van der Ree, Rodney. 2020. "Clean and Green Urban Water Bodies Benefit Nocturnal Flying Insects and Their Predators, Insectivorous Bats" Sustainability 12, no. 7: 2634. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12072634

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