Hibernacula water chemistry and implications for hibernating bats


Material Information

Hibernacula water chemistry and implications for hibernating bats
Series Title:
Journal of Mammalogy
Vanderwolf, Karen J.
McAlpine, Donald F.
McGuire, Liam P.
Oxford Academic
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
1 online resource


Subjects / Keywords:
Bats ( lcsh )
White-nose syndrome ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )


Drinking water is a critical resource for hibernating bats and its importance may be further increased when disease affects water balance. White-nose syndrome (WNS), a fungal disease that causes dehydration and electrolyte imbalance in bats, is associated with high mortality rates of several hibernating bat species in North America. Aside from restoring water balance, hibernaculum water sources may also provide minerals to bats, which could contribute to restoring electrolyte balance and reducing the impacts of WNS. However, hibernacula water sources may also be a source of toxic elements, such as heavy metals. We collected water samples from 12 hibernacula in New Brunswick, Canada, and determined the concentrations of 18 elements in each water sample (n = 103 samples). Aluminum, barium, calcium, chloride, magnesium, manganese, potassium, and sodium were the most common elements detected, with concentrations of aluminum, lead, and manganese above drinking water recommendations (developed for human consumption) in some samples. The concentrations of electrolytes in cave water were orders of magnitude below therapeutic concentrations. Sampling period (early hibernation, late hibernation) did not affect results, but water profiles differed among sites and sample types within a site (running water, standing water, ceiling drip, and ice). The water profiles we recorded in our study suggest little potential for secondary consequences of drinking water, whether positive (i.e., electrolyte or mineral supplementation) or negative (i.e., heavy metal contamination).

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
K26-05348 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.5348 ( USFLDC Handle )

USFLDC Membership

Added automatically
Karst Information Portal

Postcard Information



Download Options

No images are available for this item.
Cite this item close


Cras ut cursus ante, a fringilla nunc. Mauris lorem nunc, cursus sit amet enim ac, vehicula vestibulum mi. Mauris viverra nisl vel enim faucibus porta. Praesent sit amet ornare diam, non finibus nulla.


Cras efficitur magna et sapien varius, luctus ullamcorper dolor convallis. Orci varius natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Fusce sit amet justo ut erat laoreet congue sed a ante.


Phasellus ornare in augue eu imperdiet. Donec malesuada sapien ante, at vehicula orci tempor molestie. Proin vitae urna elit. Pellentesque vitae nisi et diam euismod malesuada aliquet non erat.


Nunc fringilla dolor ut dictum placerat. Proin ac neque rutrum, consectetur ligula id, laoreet ligula. Nulla lorem massa, consectetur vitae consequat in, lobortis at dolor. Nunc sed leo odio.