Our Team: John Chenger, President of BCM

 John has over 20 years of experience in the field of wildlife conservation and research. He is currently President of Bat Conservation and Management, Inc. (BCM), a company he formed in 1998 to supply wildlife agencies and the general public with remarkably successful artificial bat roosts. His company provides consulting services on numerous wildlife survey and mitigation projects and produces custom field-gear for the survey and monitoring of bats and other wildlife. He has directed and participated in numerous projects including over 600 cave identifications, individual and regional cave and mine surveys, karst hydrology studies, summer woodland bat mist net surveys, Allegheny woodrat surveys to determine presence, population size, and habitat use. He has conducted abandoned mine habitat assessments, fall harp trapping surveys for bats, echolocation call analysis, ground and aerial radio telemetry coordination, harp trap and artificial roost design, and bat friendly gate design. Since 2004 he has been a recurring instructor at annual Bat Conservation International’s national, Bat Conservation and Management, and Bat Survey Solutions training workshops that offer a comprehensive curriculum designed to train serious students, consultants, and land managers in the current research and management techniques for the study of bats. He has served as a Sub-Region Coordinator within the National Cave Rescue Commission. He has previously designed and implemented six simultaneous public educational programs at the commercial cave Laurel Caverns (Farmington PA), in addition to overseeing the interpretive staff and publishing a book on the history, geology, and biology for this summer attraction. Before becoming involved with bat conservation, John was a professional studio and field photographer, skills that continue to be utilized to this day.

 

RELEVANT EXPERIENCE

President and Owner, Lead Project Coordinator. (1999 to Present)

Bat Conservation and Management, Inc. (BCM), Carlisle, PA

Duties: Performing high quality bat sampling and management services for industrial, commercial and government clients; design, supervise and run projects to meet USFWS section 7 and 10 Indiana bat consultation needs; supervise up to 20 employees, sampling over 1,700 summer mist net sites and fall & spring mine surveys in 17 states across more than 125 projects; design bat acoustic monitoring studies and provide expert manual analysis of recordings; expert in using SonoBat, Kaleidoscope, Echoclass, and BCID echolocation call analysis software; supervise employees during radio tracking projects that tagged over 215 bats of 6 species since 2000, including Myotis sodalis, M. septentrionalis, M. leibii, M. lucifugus, Lasiurus borealis, and L. cinereus, which included migration, summer foraging, and locating roosts; supervise employees providing surveys covering most of the needs of developers including mist net surveys, woodrat surveys, bat acoustic surveys, cave and mine project area evaluations, M. leibii habitat evaluations, and artificial roost design and creation; permitted by both federal and state agencies to sample bats nationwide, including endangered M. sodalis and M. grisescens.

 

Biologist Aide. (1992 to 2006)

Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC), Harrisburg PA

Duties: Assisted PGC biologists in a wide variety of biological sampling; Target animals included bats, woodrats, flying squirrels, small mammals, and peregrine falcons; performed bat mist net, harp trap, and Anabat surveys for bats; handled more than 20,000 individual bats; performed over 300 external and internal hibernacula surveys in caves, mines, tunnels, and aqueducts, identifying over 200,000 individual bats; assisted with the first identification of modern use at 8 Pennsylvania and 2 New Jersey M. sodalis hibernacula; surveyed potential sites for presence or historic presence of the Allegheny woodrat (Neotoma magister); ran small mammal trap lines in remote locations across PA

 

SELECT PUBLICATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

Tyburec, J.D. and J.D. Chenger. 2013. Using Auto-classifiers for Acoustic Surveys: Do Results Reflect Reality?Presentation at the Northeast Bat Working Group Meeting, Albany NY, January 2013.

 

BAT-SURVEY AND MONITORING HIGHLIGHTS

2009 – Radio Telemetry Monitoring of Allegheny Woodrat (Neotoma magister) Activity after capture in southwestern Pennsylvania. Four reproductive woodrats (three females and one male) were monitored for 4 weeks. Fayette County, PA.

2010 – Radio Telemetry Monitoring of Myotis septentrionalis and Myotis leibii after mist net capture in central Pennsylvania. Of the 7 Myotis septentrionalis, all were adult females; 4 were non-reproductive, 1 was pregnant, and 2 were lactating. Bats were radio tracked for a total of 18 nights of foraging data and 13 days of daytime roosts. Of the 4 Myotis leibii, 2 were adult females (1 non-reproductive, 1 pregnant), and 2 were adult males (both non-reproductive) that were radio tracked for a total of 13 nights of foraging data and 8 days of daytime roosts in Centre and Clinton Counties, PA.

2011 – Radio Telemetry Monitoring of Myotis septentrionalis, all 4 were adult females; three were pregnant, one was non-reproductive. They were radio tracked for a total of 21 nights of foraging data and were found using 16 roost trees. Lycoming County, PA.

2011 – Radio Telemetry Study to Determine Foraging Patterns, Habitat Use, and Roost Sites of Myotis septentrionalis and Lasionycteris noctivagans in Tioga County, PA

2011 – Summer Indiana bat Mist Netting effort consisting of 26 sites. 397 captures of 6 species. Tioga County, PA.

2011 – Bat Mist Netting efforts consisting of 8 sites sampled multiple times from July through October. 74 captures of 4 species. Identified 19 Eptesicus fuscus, 6 Lasiurus borealis, 4 Myotis lucifugus, and 9 Myotis septentrionalis. Garrett County, MD.

2011 – Summer Indiana Bat Mist Netting effort consisting of 2 sites with 6 captures of 2 species. Identified 3 Eptesicus fuscus and 1 Lasiurus borealis. Orange County, NY.

2011 – Summer Indiana Bat Mist Netting effort consisting of 48 sites with 717 captures of 7 species. Identified 102 Eptesicus fuscus, 4 Lasiurus borealis, and 19 Myotis lucifugus. Luzerne and Wyoming Counties, PA

 

CUSTOM TRAINING CLASSES

2012-Present

“Data Management” classes, “Acoustic Survey Methods” courses, and “Combined Field Survey Techniques” workshops for Janet Tyburec Consulting and Bat Survey Solutions, LLC (Tucson AZ) at venues in Arizona, California, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Utah, and West Virginia.

2008-2012

“Bat Study and Survey Techniques” workshops for Bat Conservation and Management, Inc. (BCM, Carlisle PA) at venues in Arizona, California, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia.

2001-2012

“Acoustic Monitoring for Bats” workshops for BCI at venues in Arizona, California, Kentucky and Pennsylvania.

 

SKILLS AND INTERESTS

Caving, Computer Design/Layout, Film Production, Photography, Videography, White-water Kayaking.