Biodiversity Assessment Team (BAT)
The Biodiversity Assessment Team or BAT is a cooperative group of students and faculty conducting research on the diversity, ecology and habitat quality of organisms inhabiting the Denison University Biological Reserve. In a given year, the team may consist of several students, each assessing the abundance, diversity and critical habitat of a different taxon and comparing these variables between habitats within the Reserve or with other conservation holdings within Licking County. Other team members may conduct research on the ecology or behavior of a specific organism at the Reserve in which field research is a significant component. BAT team members also may be involved in characterizing the physical environment (e.g. soils and water) which affect the resident species of the Reserve. The results of these studies may result in recommendations to the Director which inform management policy. And finally, The BAT team participates in three long-term monitoring programs involving frogs, butterflies, and dragonflies. Data from annual censuses of these three important indicator taxa are sent to state-wide surveys organized by the Ohio Frog Calling Survey, the Ohio Lepidopterists, and the Ohio Odonata Society.
BAT members share more than a common study site. Team members may meet several times a week for orientation walks, natural history presentations (by both students and faculty), discussions of scientific papers, demonstrations of field techniques and computer resources, and weekly progress reports. Team members share what they know and learn and often assist one another in their respective fieldwork. Each student has a working space within the Polly Anderson Field Station which serves as base of operations and home roost for the BAT.