Report “Mediterranean riparian forests and bats – challenges and conservation”
Riparian forests are diverse environments, constantly evolving with the floods and developments. With small surface areas in the Southern region, these biodiversity-rich habitats are greatly threatened. Considering that and the lack of knowledge of their role for bats, the RipiMed study (Ripisylves méditerranéennes – Mediterranean riparian forests) assessed the importance of these woods and their functional roles for Chiropterans, which are true bioindicators of environmental quality. This book, a restitution of a study carried out in 2018, does not claim to propose solutions to all the difficulties encountered by managers. But it provides an overview of the current state and the baseline data supporting new issues that should be taken into account today. The results show the essential role of riparian forests throughout the life cycle of bats and the crucial importance of the maturity of these woodlands for roosts, food resources and corridors. The study also estimated the functional width of the riparian forest to be between 30-50 m, which is far from what is observed today. Although they are very localised, they seem to play a key ecological role for wildlife at the regional level.
Citation : L. Buono, L. Bruhat, A Acca, J Antoine, E. Cosson (2019). Mediterranean riparian forests and bats, challenges and conservation. Groupe Chiroptères de Provence. Agence de l’eau Rhône-Méditerranée-Corse, EDF. 68p.