Notice of permit

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Regional or Local Number: GRA-2018-28617

Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the provisions of section 74 of the Species at Risk Act permit no. GRA-2018-28617 is issued.

Purpose:
Scientific research for the conservation of the species

Description:
The objectives of the program are to: (i) Identify GNP anthropogenic structures used as roosting sites by LBMY; (ii) Assess occupancy of roosting sites and colony size over time; and, (iii) Return an inventory of the GNP bat community. As the majority of Myotis species cannot be reliably identified without capture and direct handling, capture is required to return an inventory of the GNP bat community. Bats will be captured using mist nets, which is a common technique for surveying bats as part of species inventories (Kunz and Kurta 1988, Vonhof 2010). Mist netting will occur on a maximum of 6 nights. We expect approximately 0-100 bats/night to be captured during the course of the survey. Approximately 10 minutes/bat are expected to be needed for taking body measurement, id the species, sex the individuals and take wing swabs (if applicable). Highly pregnant bats will be released immediately. Depending on funding availability, mist-netting surveys may be repeated in different zones over multiple years, in order to return a more precise snapshot of the GNP bat community. Additionally, up to 6 Bat detectors will be placed in potentially good bat habitat (e.g. nearby oxbows, ponds, creeks/rivers, coulees, etc.) for up to 6 days to acquire information on bat habitat use, inform selection of future mist-netting sites and help inventory of species community. In order to optimize detection and identification of bat species, bat detector units will be mounted on poles approx. 2.5-3 m high. This activity represents a violation of the Emergency Order for the Protection of the Greater Sage-grouse.

Start Date: 2018-07-12   End Date: 2019-07-31

Issuing Authority: Parks Canada Agency

Authority Used:

  • Species at Risk Act
  • Canada National Parks Act

Location of Activity (province, territory or ocean):

  • Saskatchewan

Affected Species:

Pre-Conditions:
Alternatives: Little Brown Myotis The alternative of solely using acoustic devices is an option and has been a useful tool to identify and confirm bat presence at sites. However, acoustic monitoring devices are limited in their accuracy of identification of bats species (Lemen et al. 2015). Furthermore, detection of LBMY through acoustic monitoring does not inform on roost occupancy nor the size of the colony utilizing the roosts. Mist-netting is the best alternative that will support the achievement of the objectives of this program with minimal disturbance to the bats. Greater Sage-grouse The alternative of mounting acoustic monitoring units at lower height (i.e. <1.2 meters) is not feasible, as this will i) decrease probability of detection of bat echo-location; and ii) hinder the identification of species, as different (and less diagnostic) echo location call patterns are used in closer proximity to the ground. Mitigations: Little Brown Myotis Bats appear resilient to capture and handling, and few bats are injured or killed because of capture surveys. However, the risk of death or injury to bats will be further minimized through the following mitigation measures: (1) capture and handling will be overseen by an experienced bat biologist; (2) nets will be checked regularly to minimize the time bats are captured (e.g., every 10-15 minutes); (3) field crews will carry a cutting instrument in case bats cannot be quickly extracted from nets; (4) bats will be temporarily held individually in soft cloth bags; (5) netting will end by 1 hour prior to sunrise and all bats will be released prior to dawn (to reduce the risk of predation by birds); (6) pregnant or injured bats will be released without a holding period or further processing; (7) nets will be temporarily closed if the capture rate exceeds operational capacity; and (8) netting will not occur in inclement weather (cold or rainy conditions). Greater Sage-grouse Acoustic monitoring units for bats will be set in proximity to roads to facilitate monitoring. Should field staff document raptors or corvids perching on the poles, their design will be altered to include perch deterrents (e.g. pigeon spikes). Should deterrents not work, bat detectors will be removed. Jeopardy to Survival or Recovery Little Brown Myotis The treatment of bats will be consistent with the Guidelines of the American Society of Mammalogists for the Use of Wild Mammals in Research (Gannon and Sikes 2007), and no bats are anticipated to be harmed as part of this study. This project will not impact survival or recovery of the species. Greater Sage-grouse The use of bat acoustic monitoring units will not jeopardize survival or recovery of Greater Sage-grouse, given i) the limited diameter and lack of any horizontal surface, which makes extremely unlikely that these poles will provide perching opportunities for raptors or corvids; and ii) the bat detector units will be in place for a maximum of only 6 days, well outside the lekking period.

Contact Person(s)
Parks Canada
Species Conservation and Management
Natural Resource Conservation
Parks Canada
30 Victoria Street 3rd floor
Gatineau, QC
J8X 0B3
Tel: 888-773-8888
Fax: 819-420-9273
pca_sar.registrycomments@pc.gc.ca

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