Woodland habitat metrics (edge shape index etc.) and bat activity

Discussion created by chiropta on Mar 31, 2011
Latest reply on Apr 6, 2011 by chiropta
Hi guys,

I'm really hoping someone may be able to help me with my MSc research.  Research has already shown that bats like to forage along woodland edges in the UK, but I'm hoping to examine data I have available to me to see whether other woodland metrics may effect the level of bat activity, particularly edge to core ratios.

The bat activity data was collected using remote detectors at static point samples and I have created points in ArcMap with the associated data in the point's attribute table.  I have the woodland mapped as polygons and have calculated the habitat metrics using the V-Late extension e.g. woodland edge, edge to core ratios, shape index etc. the calculated metrics are now in the polygon attribute table. I have data on 12 sites with 5-8 locations at each site spread around the UK. 

I've trawled websites and journal articles but I've been really struggling to work out how to perform the analysis.  So am hoping any readers of this post may be able to give me a few ideas.  I was hoping to keep the data in polygons to keep a higher resolution, but should I scrap polygons, convert to raster and use fragstats?  Should I be doing a nearest neighbour analysis i.e. nearest woodland to the sample points? Should I take an entirely different approach?!!

I only have an ArcGIS desktop licence, so some of the possible methods I have come across have been ruled out. However, I do have access to a statistical package to export results to for analysis if necessary.  Any ideas or guidelines to perform this analysis would be thoroughly appreciated.