Professor awarded two wildlife grants


In August, Dr. Karen Powers was awarded two research grants for wildlife research projects for 2015-2016.

The first is a $20,000 renewal by the Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries (VDGIF) for surveys for several endangered and threatened bat species in Virginia. Given the advent of white-nose syndrome, a deadly disease affecting cave bats in the eastern United States, continued monitoring of remaining bat populations is necessary. Powers and research students are primarily assisting state biologists with surveys of northern long-eared bats, Indiana bats, little brown bats,and small-footed bats. This will include surveys of summer maternity colonies, fall cave entrances, winter hibernacula, and additional sites previously surveyed throughout the state. Powers has been assisting state wildlife managers with this work since 2009, and over 25 undergradate biology majors have participated in this bat research.


The second grant is a $5000 award to complete vegetation surveys at the Radford Army Ammunition Plant (Radford Arsenal), investigating the response of plant communities ot prescribed fire. The Radford Arsenal had plans to burn grassland land parcels in spring 2016. Powers and 1 biology undergraduate student worked with the Arsenal biologist to complete intensive vegetation surveys at these parcels. Powers and students will repeat these surveys after the fire (in summer 2016) to determine if this is a successful management technique for removing invasive plant species.

Oct 2, 2015
Karen Powers