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knocker

Do We Need Forecasters?

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BAT BAROMETERS SIGNAL MEAL TIME

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Bats appear to use a built in barometer to determine the chances of a good night's bug hunting, according to a study by Ken Paige of the University of Illinois Institute for Environmental Studies.

Paige spent nearly a year monitoring the dining habits of a colony of eastern pipistrelles, a cave-dwelling bat commonly seen in western Illinois. He found that the bats emerged in larger numbers when barometric pressures dropped and insects were numerous. He noted that the number of insects declined dramatically and that fewer bats left their roost when air pressure increased. Indeed, barometric pressure alone explained 87 percent of the variation in bat activity, he noted:

"My research strongly suggests that the eastern pipistrelle uses barometric pressure as a cue for predicting the relative abundance of aerial insect prey outside their roost. Barometric pressure is the only physical environmental cue available to a bat roosting deep within a cave. All other variables such as light, temperature, relative humidity and wind currents are virtually constant. When air pressure is low, aerial insects are abundant, and bats respond by leaving the roost to forage."

http://www.accessexcellence.org/WN/SUA06/batsense.php

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i can see some sense in that,iv'e noticed over the years trapping moles.that when we have low pressure they tend to run nearer the surface as opposed to deeper when we have sustained HP.

obviously this ties in with the levels the worms are working.i'm sure the worms can sense air presure,why else would they come further up with the onset of LP if not to avoid waterlogging?

not conclusive i know,but there is definately something going on under our feet.

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doesn't forecast the weather though just and indication of the air pressure..a barometer does exactly the same thing.

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We can see that the height at which swifts, swallows and other birds who feed on the wing fly does vary with the weather and this would indicate that the insects are at varying heights depending on the weather conditions, although I am not altogether sure whether it is air pressure or relative humidity related, or for that matter brought on by thermals on a sunny day but this would not apply to the bats who feed at night.

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worms feed 24/7, so thats put another spanner in my theory lol.

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But can they predict which way the pressure will change?

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